C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Tailor charred to death
Major fire breaks out in boutique at Sector 17; 8 cabins reduced to ashes, 12 more damaged
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
A 52-year-old tailor was charred to death in a major fire that broke out in a boutique at Sector 17-C at around 2 am today. Eight cabins of other shops were also reduced to ashes while 12 cabins were damaged in the fire.
Victim Parmal’s kin mourn his death. Tribune photos: Manoj Mahajan
Victim Parmal’s kin mourn his death. Tribune photos: Manoj Mahajan

The victim has been identified as Parmal Singh, alias Rishipal. He was working as a tailor in Classic Boutique. The fire broke out on the first floor of SCO 71-72-73 in Sector 17-C.

The Fire Department received a call from the police control room at 2.12 am. Eight fire engines were sent to the spot. Firefighters managed to control the fire at 4.30 am. Damaged sewing machines, burnt suit pieces were scattered all over.

An eyewitness, Farman, who works as a tailor with Aftab Tailors, which was also destroyed in the fire, first called the PCR and then informed Aftab, owner of Aftab Tailors.

Farman said he was sleeping in his shop while Parmal was sleeping in Classic Boutique. Around 2 am, he saw a fire and heard Parmal's screams.

He tried to open the door of Classic Boutique, but could not do so because of the fire. Vikas Sandhu, owner of Classic Boutique, said clothes, material and machinery worth Rs 10 lakh were gutted in the fire. He said Parmal had slept in the shop after completing his work.

He said with a lot of marriages round the corner, these days they were busy stitching clothes for customers.

The owner of Aftab Tailors said they were yet to calculate their losses. He said it would be difficult for him to set up his shop again.

Inspector Ram Gopal, SHO of the Sector 17 police station, said the postmortem report of the deceased had cited burn injuries as the cause of his death. The viscera sample had been sent to the CFSL lab in Sector 36, he said.

Fire safety norms violated

According to fire officials, there were no fire safety arrangements in the building. Fire safety norms had been violated. There were no proper entry and exit points. Chief Fire Officer of the MC Rajiv Gupta said they would soon issue a notice to the building owner for violation of fire safety norms. The cabins destroyed in the fire were set up in corridors, which was illegal and against the building bylaws.

Officials of Estate Office said due to building violations, they had issued a resumption notice to the owner of the building. An official said they had issued a notice and the case was pending before senior officials. 

Second fire incident

SK Nayyar, owner of Dot Graphics, whose shop was also damaged in the fire, said it was the second fire incident in these shops. In 2001, a major fire had broken out here. 



Victim worked hard to meet family's financial requirements
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
While seeing off his father last week, Kapil, 20-year-old son of Parmal Singh who was burnt alive during the fire incident at a Sector 17 shop early morning today, had hardly imagined that he would never be able to see his father returning home.

As he rushed to the Government Multi Speciality Hospital, Sector 16, from Saharanpur today morning, all he could find was a partially charred body of his father waiting to be identified by him.

Parmal Singh (45) was an ambitious tailor and had been living away from his native place, Saharanpur, to earn better livelihood for his family for the past 15 years. Battling to meet the financial requirements of his family of three children and wife in Saharanpur, Parmal used to dwell in the shop itself.

“He had come home a few days ago. He returned to Chandigarh on January 15. We all requested him to stay back for a few more days, but he promised that he would take a longer leave during Ravidas Jayanti on February 25,” said Kapil with tears rolling down his cheeks.

Parmal was sleeping inside the shop when the fire broke out at about 2.10 am today. There was nobody else inside the shop at that time. A worker at an adjoining shop was the first to hear Parmal’s screams.

“The door was locked from inside. I tried to open it, but by the time I got to know about the fire, smoke had engulfed the entire area. I could hear him crying in pain. I immediately called the police,” said Farman (21), who works at Aftab Tailors next to 
the Parmal’s shop.



Anupama case
PGI gave preference to patients with lesser injuries for surgery
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
Despite the severity of Anupama’s injury, two patients, who had relatively lesser urgency and were admitted after Anupama, were given preference for surgery at the PGI. While Anupama was admitted on July 17, the other two patients, one admitted on July 18 and the other on July 19, were operated upon on the day they were admitted to the hospital.

While Anupama needed an urgent hip disarticulation surgery, which required amputation of her leg from the hip to stop the spread of gas gangrene, her surgery was scheduled for July 19, two days after she was hurt and admitted.

The other two patients, one diagnosed with fracture, dislocation of hip and fracture of humerus and the other with vascular injury and fracture of medial condyle tibia, were operated upon on the day they were admitted (July 18 and 19).

According to orthopaedic experts, both dislocation of hip and vascular surgery were not as critical as the spread of gas gangrene and it deserved the highest priority.

“While fracture and dislocation of hip could have been easily placed down in priority, vascular injury was relatively serious and limb threatening. However, none of these were as dangerous as gas gangrene since gas is life threatening. Requirement of hip disarticulation means that the gas had already reached the hip and removing the entire leg was urgent to save her life,” said a senior orthopaedic surgeon based in the city.

The OT schedule at the PGI revealed that the surgery of the patient with fracture and dislocation of hip was performed on July 19 at 9.15 am and was completed at 10 am. The surgery of the other patient with vascular injury was performed on July 18 at 11.40 pm. Anupama's surgery was scheduled for July 19 at 12.35 am, but could not be performed due to hypotensia. The surgery was performed on July 20.

Anupama (15), a student of Government Model School, Sector 18, died on July 24 last year. She was taken to the PGI on July 17 after her left leg was crushed under the rear wheels of a CTU bus while she was on her way back home from school.

“Some flaws were pointed out by the committee in coordination. We are going to implement the recommendations of the external committee,” PGI spokesperson Manju Wadwalkar said.

Expert's take

While fracture and dislocation of hip could have been easily placed down in priority, vascular injury was relatively serious and limb threatening. However, none of these were as dangerous as gas gangrene since gas is life threatening. Requirement of hip disarticulation means that the gas had already reached the hip and removing the entire leg was urgent to save Anupama's life. — A senior orthopaedic surgeon 

Surgery delayed

Anupama's surgery was scheduled for July 19 at 12.35 am, but could not be performed due to hypotensia. The surgery was performed on July 20



Robot anaesthetist set to assist PGI docs 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
In a first, the PGI has come up with a robot anaesthetist, a computer-assisted anaesthesia delivery system, which is capable of bringing down mortality due to the adverse effects of anaesthesia.

The Closed Loop Anaesthesia Delivery System (CLADS) controls drug overdose as well as underdose. It also monitors the blood pressure of the patient during the surgery, allowing the surgeon to focus better on the surgery.

The utility of the system was tested during surgeries performed at six different institutions across the country, including the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, over the past four years. It was found that the system provided 50 per cent additional safety to patients during the surgery.

Dr Amitabh Dutta from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi, said, “We have performed 48 surgeries using the system in our institution so far. We found that by utilising this device in a busy operating room, an anaesthetist could utilise his or her attention and time on other important activities like control of heart rate, doing echo evaluation of the patient, airway and respiration management and other non-anaesthetic drug titrations.”

Dr Satinder Gombhar from the GMCH, Sector 32, said surgeries on 40 patients were performed at the hospital in 2012 using the CLADS. It was found that the system was intelligent enough to sense the requirement of analgesia (pain relief) in the patient’s body during the surgery.

“The system asks for analgesia (pain relief) whenever it senses pain in the patient’s body. The CLADS controls anaesthetic drug delivery automatically based on the feedback of its effect on the patient,” said Dr GD Puri, Head, Department of Anaethesia, PGI.

The study, "Multi-centric Evaluation of the Closed Loop Anaesthesia Delivery System", was started in December 2008 in six centres, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi, the Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, SNM Hospital, Leh, Rajindra Hospital, Patiala, and the PGI. The study was completed in November 2012.

Conventionally, anaesthesia is induced using intravenous medicines and thereafter maintained either with anaesthetic gases or intravenous medicines. Dosing with these medicines is based largely on scientific experience and individual patient response to these drugs.

The sample size of patients involved in the surgeries was 40 in each institution.

Doc can focus on surgery

The Closed Loop Anaesthesia Delivery System (CLADS) controls drug overdose as well as underdose. It also monitors the blood pressure of the patient during the surgery, allowing the surgeon to focus better on the surgery


Residents gherao DEO’s office as school denies admission

Chandigarh, January 22
High drama was witnessed at the District Education Officer’s office, Sector 19, here, when over 200 residents of Colony No. 4 and Sanjay Colony besieged the office after Govt Model High School, Sector 29, denied admission to their wards.

Deputy Mayor, MC, Satish Kainth, who headed the protest, said the neighbourhood criteria adopted by Sector 29 government school was arbitrary as it did not include nearby Colony No. 4 and Sanjay Colony (near Industrial Area, Phase I) for the purpose of admission in pre-nursery class. Residents of these areas were refused admission despite the fact that it was the only English medium government school in the whole vicinity. “We approached the education department last week to accept admission forms of these areas. But our plea was not entertained properly following which this protest was staged here at the DEO office,” said Satish.

The matter was resolved after the DPI (s) Upkar Singh arrived at the spot. Satish said the department finally acceded to their demands and agreed to entertain their admission forms. — TNS



One more tests positive for swine flu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
A 31-year-old patient from Mohali tested positive for swine flu today. The patient has been admitted to the PGIMER.

The number of swine flu cases in the city hospitals has reached 28. These include seven deaths. Among the patients, five are from the city, 13 from Punjab, two from Himachal Pradesh and one each from Jharkhand and Haryana.

Last week, a six-month-old baby from Mohali died of swine flu at the GMCH-32. Two weeks ago, a 29-year-old woman from Mani Majra died of swine flu at the PGIMER.



Rail car back on track
With a hike of Rs 50, now rail motor car ticket will cost Rs 255
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
The historical rail motor car is back on the Kalka-Shimla heritage line from today. With a hike of Rs 50 in its fare, now its ticket will be of Rs 255. The motor car has started its journey after a halt of six months. Interestingly, the motor car with a capacity of 12 passengers has a waiting list of double the number this weekend.

According to the record of the Railways, there is a waiting list of 26 persons in the motor car for January 26.

Sources in the Railways said around six months ago, due to some technical fault in the train, the authorities had withdrawn its plying. They said there was a major fault in the tires of the motor car and the authorities were struggling to find its replacement. The trail run of the motor car was conducted last week and order to commence its services was issued today.

Railways Senior Divisional Commercial Manager GM Singh said the motor car services were withdrawn due to a technical fault, but they were being resumed from today on the time table followed earlier. The bookings of the rail car have been opened.

As per schedule, it will start at 5.10 am from Kalka and the return journey from Shimla will be at 4.25 pm. A group of 12 passengers can be accommodated in this vintage locomotive, which resembles buses used during World War II.

The officials said it had become quite challenging to maintain and continue to run these heritage vehicles of the British era as there were no manufacturers for supplying spare parts of old machines. This rail car was introduced by the British between 1927 and 1930. It was the last rail car running on this track as three others had been discontinued earlier.

The officials said the motor car was preferred by tourists for a non-stop journey with only a 10-minute halt at Barog. The four-and-a-half hour journey provided travellers with a panoramic view of the Shivalik Ranges as it passed through 864 bridges, 102 tunnels and 900 sharp curves and turns.



Candlelight march held

Chandigarh, January 22
The UT Cricket Association (Regd), Chandigarh, organised a candle march today from Stadium, Sector 16, to Sector 17, Plaza, in wake of the long due affiliation of the UT Cricket Association from the BCCI. 

Members of the association said the UT Cricket Association is the only controlling authority to promote the game of cricket in the Union Territory, for last more than three decades. — TNS



SSA teachers want services regularised

Chandigarh, January 22
Over 400 SSA Teachers staged a protest in Sector 25 to raise the issue of their regularisation. The teachers said they had first forwarded the demand of regularisation in August 2010. But there was no outcome in spite of several representations of higher authorities of the UT.

Arvind, president of the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan Teachers Welfare Association, said Education Secy had approved the regularisation of the SSA Teachers on August 26, 2011 and the MHRD, New Delhi, had directed the education dept to regularise SSA Teachers in the meeting of Project Approval Board on March 14, 2011 and Feb 27, 2012, respectively. Even the UT Administrator, Shivraj Patil, on May 21, 2012, in public hearing session with the SSATWA, directed the education dept to regularise the teachers without any delay. But there is no result.” he added. — TNS



No star nite at DAV-10
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 22
Fearing violence on campus, the DAV College, Sector 10, has decided to say no to the “Star Nite” organised in the college every year in March. The college had turned into a battleground a day before the star nite in 2012 with five gunshots fired after around 20 armed assailants, carrying swords and sticks, had entered the campus that left seven students injured.

Learning a lesson from the last year’s incident, the DAV college managing committee has turned-down the demand of the student council to hold a star night in the college.

College principal, BC Joshan, said they have denied the students for the star night to ensure peace on the campus. “We have no objections for holding a cultural function in which the college students should participate and show their talent,” he said.

Joshan said to maintain peace on the campus the college had also denied admissions to over 40 students during the current academic session who were involved in the violence. “To maintain the academic atmosphere in the college, we will have to take this step as safety of students is our priority,” principal added.

In 2012, the PUSU members were attacked by the members of their rival party while they were preparing for the function. The star night was cancelled by the college even though invitations to guests were sent and all arrangements for the star night were made, along with the setting of the stage.

The decision of the college to say no to the star night even this year has led to resentment among the students who are now planning to launch an agitation against the college authorities.

Kapish Chauhan, general secretary of the College Students Council, said the star night is a tradition going-on from over a decade and discontinuing it would be against the student’s right. “How can the college predict that the star nite can disturb the peace on the campus,” Chauhan stated.



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