C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Accused escapes, held
Departmental probe ordered against Sub-Inspector, constable
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
In an embarrassment to the police, an accused arrested in a theft case yesterday escaped from police custody while he was brought to the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital in Sector 16 for a medical examination today. The accused, Maharana Kumar Singh, was later arrested from Panchkula in the evening and has been booked in a separate case of escape from police custody.

The incident speaks volumes of the glaring discrepancies on the part of the police in bringing undertrials for medical examination. A total of five prisoners were brought to the hospital for medical examination today with only three policemen to guard them.

The incident occurred in the afternoon when Maharana Kumar Singh, a resident of Burail, was brought to the hospital for a medical examination. Two co-accused in separate theft cases and two undertrials were present along with Maharana as they were together brought to the hospital from the Sector 3 police station. The five prisoners were guarded by a Sub-Inspector, a constable and a Home Guards volunteer.

Maharana pushed constable Kuldeep Singh and escaped. Kuldeep was reportedly talking to someone on his mobile phone when the accused fled from police custody.

The police launched a hunt for the accused. It gathered inputs about his accomplices and Maharana was arrested from Panchkula in the evening along with another thief, identified as Sikander.

The accused was arrested while stealing scrap from the premises of the Punjab and Haryana High Court yesterday.

Inquiry ordered into police negligence

Taking notice of the negligence by its staff, officiating UT SSP Maneesh Chaudhery has ordered a departmental inquiry against a Sub-Inspector and a constable. Action against the Home Guards volunteer guarding the undertrial has been sought through a letter to the DIG, sources said.

No lessons learnt

On April 8, an undertrial in a rape case, Deepak Kumar (27), who was lodged in the Model Burail Jail, had escaped from police custody at the GMSH-16 where he was taken for a medical examination. He had complained of stomach pain. The accused, however, surrendered in a district court after a week.



Cobwebs on cashew nuts meant for Haryana CM
Samples taken from renowned sweet shop in Panchkula
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 26
Cashew nuts meant for Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who was here to preside over a function for the physically challenged at Sector 12 A, were found to be covered with cobwebs. The major goof came to light when the officials of the Health Department took the samples of the cashew nuts before the CM could taste them.

Hooda presided over the 134th Helen Keller Birth anniversary function organised by the Haryana branch of the National Handicapped Welfare Council in Panchkula today. Cashew nuts, almonds, sweets and other delicacies were to be served to him.

Panchkula Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) RK Singh swung into action after he was informed about the cashew nuts covered with cobwebs by the Health Department officials. On finding that these were bought from Anupam Sweets, a team, headed by RK Singh visited the shop in the evening and took some samples.

"We got to know from the Health Department officials and even the Food and Supply Officer that the cashew nuts were covered with cobwebs. It is a blunder," said RK Singh.

He added: "We have taken the samples of cashew nuts, almonds and 'burfi' from Anupam Sweets, Sector 11, Panchkula ," he said.

Meanwhile, the officials looking after the function quickly purchased fresh eatables from another shop. The SDM said strict action would be taken in this case and even an enquiry was being conducted.

The authorities, who organised the programme, told the district administration that the cashew nuts were packed in a box and they saw no reason to open it.

Ravi, supervisor at Anupam Sweets, said even though the samples have been taken from his shop, their dry fruits and sweets would turn out to be fine. Food and Supply Officer Subash Chander also accompanied RK Singh during the filling of the samples at Anupam Sweets.



Fissures in Chandigarh Cong come to the fore
Party councillor alleges Mayor forming his own group against MP Pawan Kumar Bansal
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
In a major political upheaval in the local Congress, city Mayor Subhash Chawla was today accused of allegedly forming his own group against former Union Railway Minister and local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal. These allegations have been levelled against Chawla by none other than a councillor from his own Congress party. It is for the first time in the history of the Municipal Corporation (MC) that a councillor has written to the Mayor levelling such allegations.

The Mayor's office received a letter from Congress councillor Mukesh Bassi today. In the letter, Bassi has targeted Chawla by stating that for the past few months, he has observed that the Mayor is forming his own groups in every single municipal ward dominated by the Congress workers close to Bansal.

In the wake of the railgate scam, Bansal has been finding it difficult to regain his political base in the city.

After his exit from the Union Cabinet, many senior Congress leaders, including the local leaders, are now eyeing the Lok Sabha seat from the City Beautiful.

How it all started

Bassi was upset to know about Chawla's visit to the Sector 19 market on June 25, without informing him. Bassi has alleged that Chawla's visit to the Sector 19 market to solve the shopkeepers' problems has sent wrong signals to the residents of his ward. Bassi says they think their councillor is not doing anything for them and only the Mayor is their well-wisher. In the past 18 months, he had carried out developmental works worht Rs 14 crore in his ward whereas Chawla has hardly done anything for the residents of his own ward (Ward No. 5), which includes Sector 25 and Dhanas village, adds Bassi.

In the letter, the Congress councillor says a shopkeeper of Sector 19, on whose complaint the Mayor visited the Sector 19 market, is close to Chawla and regularly visits the Mayor's office. It has been mentioned in the letter that the complaint was politically motivated and was made at the Mayor's behest.

'You took my silence as my weakness'

"Since January, you have done a number of things which went against me in my area. I had remained silent only for the sake of my Congress party, local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal and party president BB Behl. But, you took my silence as my weakness and are deliberately making attempts to ruin my political image. Therefore, I am writing this letter to you. I always gave my wholehearted support to you as city Mayor and had never thought that you will target me, the letter reads.



Now, pay Rs 5 for first 4 hrs at Sector 17 parking
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
The Municipal Corporation today approved Rs 5 parking fee for the first four hours at the paid parking lot in Sector 17. The visitors would have to shell out additional Rs 5 per hour for the subsequent hours.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) held here today. Earlier, a proposal was mooted for charging Rs 5 for the first two hours that was opposed by the Traders' Association of Sector 17, citing a decrease in the number of visitors.

The association had recently met the area councillor and the Mayor and proposed to increase the parking fee hours from two to four. The association had stated that the number of visitors to the market had decreased due to the shifting of the District Courts Complex from Sector 17 to Sector 43 and the opening of the Elante mall in the Industrial Area, Phase 1. The traders also said these parking constraints would further affect their business.

"We welcome the decision of the F&CC. This will encourage sales and visitors' arrival at the market. It has brought hopes for the raders," said JPS Kalra, general secretary of the association.

The F&CC members also approved the construction of a boundary wall at the sports complex, Dadu Majra village, at a cost of Rs 25.66 lakh.

Installing split air-conditioners and carrying out allied works at the community centre, Sector 27, at an estimated cost of Rs 12.88 lakh was also approved.

The committee also gave its nod to the purchase of 260 garbage collection cycle carts and water coolers for the 13 civil dispensaries under the civic body's jurisdiction.

For the Rose Club in Sector 16, installing split and window air-conditioners at the multipurpose hall, meeting room, gymnasium, library and the office of the community centre at cost of Rs 7.98 lakh was also approved.

More tube-wells to meet water shortage in city

In other decisions, the F&CC members approved the proposal of the MC to meet the shortage of 9 MGD of water in the city. The MC has directed its public and health wings to identify the locations for setting up new tube-wells and make proposals for the re-boring of the old tube-wells.



900 stranded pilgrims reach city
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
We have got a second birth. These were the repeated words of several survivors who were brought back from Rishikesh on the Punjab Roadways and PRTC buses to the Sector 43 ISBT today. Over 900 pilgrims, rescued from Hem Kund Sahib and other places, reached Chandigarh today. From there, they were sent to different parts of Punjab through free transportation facility arranged by the Punjab government.

While recounting his experience, Jaswinder Singh (28), from Mansa, said he was still in a shock having seen the massive destruction in several parts of Uttarakhand. Children and women were worst affected, he said.

“We remained trapped in Govind Dham, about 5 km from Hemkund Sahib for four days. It was through a rope bridge running above the flood-swollen river that several pilgrims were evacuated,” he said.

Jagdeep Singh from Ganganagar, Rajasthan, said the rescue operation was very slow. Despite 5,000 passengers being trapped between Govind Ghatt and Hemkund Sahib, around 300 pilgrims were being airlifted every day.

First three days, said 59-year-old Jaswant Singh from Mohali district, were very difficult. Trapped in Govind Ghatt, he and others had to survive on rainwater, since food and other necessary items did not reach there on time, he said.

“It was only after we reached Joshi Math that we were given warm clothes and proper food,” said Jaswant.

Hirdeypal Singh from Hoshiarpur said that though there was no major causality at Hem Kund Sahib, people were now distressed and it would take them a long time to recover from it. He said the management of Gurdawars in and around Hem Kund Sahib was very bad.

Nineteen-year-old Manjot Kaur from Ludhiana said the family had lost all hopes of returning safely on seeing pilgrims being washed away in the flash flood. Reaching Chandigarh was a major relief, she said.

“We pray for all the other stranded pilgrims and hope they too reach home safely,” said another survivor, 42-year-old Jaspreet.

The mood was sombre at the bus stand as the survivors were returning back. Many broke down meeting their close ones.

So far, over 5,000 rescued pilgrims have arrived at ISBT-43 in the past 5-6 days, said PRTC Inspector Mangat Khan. He said as more pilgrims from Punjab were reaching Rishikesh and Dehradun after being rescued from different parts of Uttarakhand, their buses were bringing them to Chandigarh.

Around 60 buses have arrived with survivors and 30 buses are still parked in Rishikesh to bring back the rescued pilgrims, he said.

‘Almighty stayed with me throughout’

A physically challenged pilgrim from Bhatinda, Jaswant Singh, had a close brush with death on the way back from Hemkund Sahib. Recounting his experience at the Sector 43 ISBT, he said he got trapped in a landslide near Hemkund Sahib. Though his back was badly injured, he managed to escape, and sought assistance. “Even as I was in constant pain, the Almighty was with me throughout the ordeal,” he said



Won over death, but lost loved ones
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
On the one hand there are those who battled with death to be reunited with their families after being rescued from Uttarakhand, there are, on the other hand, a few for whom life has lost its meaning despite being rescued.

While one of them cries out loud calling his 10-year-old daughter’s name, another bangs his head on ground with grief as the sight of his wife and children being washed away haunts him.

Oblivious of every thing happening around them, they rush towards every helicopter that lands carrying rescued victims on board, hoping that their family members are on board.

This is a common sight for the past three days at Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, where doctors have been forcefully feeding victims to keep them alive.

“As the relief camp wears a gloomy look, helicopters bring some excitement as victims hope to see their family members among the rescued,” said Dr Manoj Kumar, emergency medical officer from Sacred Heart Hospital, Jalandhar, who volunteered to visit the relief camp at Dehradun.

Doctors fear that some of the victims might slip into depression due to disappointment upon not finding any familiar faces among those rescued.

Chander Pal Singh, a native of Rajasthan, lost all his eight family members in the floods. He has been madly searching for them at the relief camp.

Another victim, Sukhjit Singh, who was heading to Hemkund Sahib from his native place in Nanded lost his entire family and is left alone.

“These victims are reluctant to eat anything. We have been forcefully feeding them. Low blood pressure and dehydration is turning out to be a common problem among them,” said Dr Nirmal Raut, medical oncologist from Jupitar Hospital in Mumbai.

The camp has been organised by a Panchkula-based NGO, Vishav Manav Ruhani Kendra, for free distribution of medicines to the flood-affected people. The doctors are volunteers of the society and a team of 70 volunteers has been accompanying them to the camp for carrying out other activities, including langars.



80 Ambala residents still stuck in Kedarnath, four missing
Suman Bhatnagar

Ambala, June 26
As many as 80 pilgrims from Ambala are still stranded at Kedarnath and Badrinath, while four persons are reported to be missing. A driver, Jasvinder Saini, a resident of Sahzadpur, had driven four members of two families to Badrinath. While both the families, of Gopal Pandit and Mangat Ram, have returned, there is no clue about Saini’s whereabouts.

Two other drivers from Jandli village, Gurbadan Singh and Rama Shankar Panday, are also missing. Six persons who had hired them have returned.

A wholesale cloth merchant, Surender Aggarwal, is also missing. He had gone to Kedarnath along with his wife and friends, who all have returned safely.

Ambala Cantonment residents Chajju Ram, Tara Sharma and two others, who had gone to Badrinath on June 8, are stranded at the holy place. Chajju Ram’s daughter Mamta said they were safe.

Similarly, 21 people belonging to four families of Ajeet Nagar, Ambala Cantonment, are also stranded in Badrinath for the past one week.

As many as 10 residents of Saunta village are also stuck in Badrinath. They are waiting for their turn to be rescued to Dehradun.

Seven residents of Ravi Das Nagar, Ambala City, six of Ram Kishan Colony and 24 other from Ambala Cantt, including RM Bali, Vandana Bali, Naresh Sharma, Veena Sharma, and Shakti Sharma, are stranded in Badrinath.

Devender Kumar, Raju, and Raj Kumar of Ambala Cantt are also stuck there for the past several days.

Balwinder Saini, a resident of Ambala Cantonment, along with three of his family members, is also stuck there.



Sangla officials showed no compassion: Survivor
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
The rescue operation in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, which was also hit by landslide last week, has come under criticism. A Chandigarh resident, Rajiv Gandhi, who returned after being stranded with his family near Sangla Valley for over five days, said that even in the hour of crisis, the evacuation process at tourist camps in Kinnaur district was marred with favouritism and mismanagement.

Rajiv (45), an immigrantion consultant had gone to an adventure camp, around 5 km from Sangla Valley, with his family, on June 15. However, heavy rain and landslide snapped the road connectivity. “We tried to trek to Sangla Valley, but heavy rain and continuous flowing of boulders from hills made it impossible,” he said.

“Even as we were evacuated to Sangla Valley on June 19, the crisis was not over yet,” he said. Rajiv said that since road connectivity from Kinnaur to Rampur was devastated, the local officials were airlifting tourists to Rampur.

“Despite getting the family registered with the local tehsil office for airlifting on June 19, we had to wait for another three days, since the officials were giving preference to influential persons,” he said.

To make quick bucks, the local hotels too jacked up prices, he said.

“On June 21, I alone was airlifted. I tried to come out of the helicopter, but was not allowed. After reaching Rampur, I made frantic calls to the local tehsil office in Sangla Valley to airlift my family, but they reached only next day. My wife and children were distressed, but the officials showed no compassion,” said Rajiv.



DC receives Rs 7 lakh in donations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
The Deputy Commissioner office has received over Rs 7 lakh in form of donations for the flood victims from the city residents in response to a pubic appeal made by the DC.

Giving details, the DC said in the past one week, the amount of donations has touched Rs 7.74 lakh. The DC has appealed to the city residents to come forward and contribute liberally for thousands of flood-affected people in Uttarakhand.



Panchayat poll
3,356 candidates in fray in Mohali
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 26
As many as 3,356 candidates are in a fray in the Mohali district for elections of the gram panchayat which are scheduled to be held on July 3. District Election Officer-cum-Deputy Commissioner, Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu, said here today that as many as 6,774 candidates had filed their nomination papers from three blocks of the district.

But 2,082 candidates had later withdrawn their nomination papers leaving only 3,356 candidates in the contests. Out of these, 845 would contest for the post of sarpanch and 2,511 for being elected as panches.

Sidhu said elections for 22 panchayats were held unanimously. He said in the Kharar block, there were 1,340 candidates in the contest out of which 340 would contest for the post of sarpanch and 1,000 would be in the fray for being elected as panches.

In the Dera Bassi block, there were 1,229 candidates out of which 282 would contest for the post of sarpanch while 947 would be contesting as panches. In the Majri block, 787 candidates were in the fray.

Voting will be held from 8 am to 4 pm and counting will also be held on the same day.

Six panchyats elected unanimously

Dera Bassi: After the completion of filing, scrutiny and withdrawal of nomination papers for panchyat elections, six village panchyats and 271 panchyat members of the different villages were elected unanimously.

As per information, villages, where all panchyat members, including sarpanchs were elected unanimously, included Bakarpur, pandwala, Jandli, Bohra, Sarangpur and Jodhpur.

The elected sarpanch include Gurvinder Kaur from Bakparpur, Santosh Rani from Pandwala, Kaka Singh from Bohra, Balkar Singh from Jandli, Kuldeep kaur from Sarangpur, Suman Kaur from Jodhpur and Inderjeet kaur from Pragpur.

Besides, 271 panchyat members from different villages were also elected unanimously.

Now election would be held for 101 village panchyats on July 3 and counting of votes would also be held on the same day.

As many as 282 candidates are in the fray for 101 village sarpanchs and 947 candidates have been left in the fray for the election of panchyat members of these villages in Dera Bassi block.



No seats for disabled children
Function was organised to felicitate them in Panchkula
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 26
Physically challenged children, who were to be “honoured” today by the Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda at Sector 12-A were given slipshod behaviour after they faced jostling, pushes and even got no seat as the local politicians were busy occupying the front seats to get Hooda’s attention.

Bhupinder Singh Hooda presided over the function as the chief guest at the “Hellan Keller Jayanti Samaroh” organised by the National Handicapped Welfare Council, Haryana branch, in Panchkula here today.

Many disabled persons were present to receive the “honour” from the CM on the occasion of the 134 Kellar’s birth anniversary celebrations.

Contenders for Mayor’s post, who are in a fray along with other councillors, even the lost ones, were there to ‘mark their attendance” before the CM, occupied the seats there.

“My child has no place to sit. We have been standing at the back side for the past half an hour. At least, the politicians could sit at a different place,” said Ranbir Singh, a parent who had come with his physically challenged child to receive the honour.

The function was held in the basement and children could be seen facing the jostling while the local politicians were scrambling to get the CM’s attention.

“All the seats have been occupied by the politicians. My daughter is polio-stricken and cannot stand for long. But we are helpless,” said Rajshree, a parent.

Haryana Chief Minister, Bhupinder Singh Hooda, announced to give Rs 21 lakh from his discretionary fund for setting up a Physiotherapy Centre in the complex to be named after Hellan Kelar. He also announced that a wall would also be constructed along the drain which passes in front of the council’s building. He also honoured the disabled and gave away certificates. Hooda also awarded six Helen Keller Memorial Awards to those who have made outstanding contribution to help the disabled.



City dispensaries not in the pink of health
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
Civil dispensaries in the city are not in the pink of health, if the situation of waterlogging around some of these is an indication. Potholed and uneven roads around the dispensary premises in various sectors are fast turning into breeding grounds for mosquitoes, posing the risk of malaria.

1) Waterlogged roads near the Sectors 22 and 2) 26 civil dispensaries in Chandigarh. 3) Stagnant water leaves no space for patients to enter the Sector 20 Civil Dispensary on foot; and 4) A pothole at the entrance to the Sector 45 Civil Dispensary in Chandigarh. Tribune photos: Manoj Mahajan

The civil dispensary in Sector 20, for instance, has its entrance flooded with dirty water, leaving no space for walking through. The problem has been there since the beginning of the monsoon season.

The situation is similar around the civil dispensaries in Sectors 22, 26 and 45 that are visited by hundreds of people everyday.

Ironically, while health department officials preach the message of malaria prevention and also boast about anti-larval activities, there is rarely any check on accumulation of rain water around dispensaries.

“During their door-to-door visit at the peak of monsoons, officials give us tips on preventing malaria and the fine for violations. Here, however, there is no check on violations,” Anita Rana, a patient visiting the Sector 20 dispensary said.

While the road in front of the Sector 22 dispensary lacks any gully, leading to accumulation of water, the entrance to Sector 26 dispensary has huge potholes.

Residents must complain on helpline numbers

We have issued strict instructions to our sub-divisional engineers to keep a tab on the waterlogging problem. There are certain areas that cannot be covered by us at all the times. The helpline numbers are available on our website. Residents must inform us and we will do the needful. Joint efforts have to be made along with the anti-malaria wing.

— Subhash Chawla, Mayor, Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh



Mohali suicide
Book in-laws in murder case, demands deceased’s family
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 26
High drama was witnessed in front of the house of Seema Bhardwaj’s in-laws today, as several relatives of the deceased woman staged a protest there, demanding registration of a murder case against the in-laws. Seema had allegedly committed suicide after consuming some poisonous substance at the Phase V house yesterday morning.

The police booked victim’s NRI husband, Surinder Bhardwaj, father-in-law, Ram Lal, and brothers-in-law Ram Kumar and Rajinder Kumar under Section 304-B of the IPC. The police arrested Rajinder Kumar today, while others are still absconding.

Seema’s relatives reached the house along with Seema’s body and hurled stones at it, breaking windowpanes. No one was present in the house at that time.

The Station House Officer pacified the protestors, following which the body was taken for cremation.

Seema got married in March 2011. Soon after her husband went to Canada. Seema’s family alleged she was being harassed by her in-laws as they wanted to get rid of her.



Family accuses docs of negligence
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
Family of a stillborn baby created ruckus at Government Multi-Specialty Hospital, Sector 16, accusing doctors of medical negligence this morning. Arif, a resident of Ram Darbar, whose child was stillborn, said the doctors, while admitting his wife yesterday, told the family that the child was already dead. He alleged that after the delivery, one of the relatives found that the baby was still alive.

“My baby died due to negligence on the part of doctors. They must have interpreted the ultrasound report wrongly,” said mother Parveena.

The hospital authorities maintained that the ultrasound report clearly established that the baby was already dead, and the delivery had to be conducted to save the mother.

“Neither the parents nor any of the relatives have submitted any complaints,” said medical superintendent of the hospital Dr Rajiv Vadhera.

“After learning about their demonstration at the hospital, we suggested them to opt for autopsy. But they refused,” he said. The family has submitted a complaint with the police.



Summer workshop at Kala Gram concludes

Chandigarh, June 26
Four short plays were staged at the Kala Gram in Manimajra as part of the concluding summer workshop on theatre and folk dances. Over 200 children participated in these four plays, including Luck By Chance, Hum Sab Sath Sath Hain, Nandu Nakalchi and Kutta Puran. All these plays had brought alive various facets of life.

Kutta Puran was a story of how a dog’s death was blown out of portion and the matter reached Parliament. Luck By chance was about fraudulent saints. Nandu Nakalchi was based on the story of troubled and naughty boy. Hum Sab Sath Sath Hain, which was performed by small children, inspired everyone to live together and spread peace and unity. "Theatre experts Hafeez Khan, Gulista and Narinder took the theatre workshop while folk dance workshop was conducted by Baldeep chand and Aarti Singh," said Yaswinder, programme officer. — TNS



Major cut in SSA budget for UT
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
The Central Government made a major cut in sanctioning the budget of the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) to Chandigarh for 2013-14. Against Rs 92 crore of budget proposed by the Chandigarh Administration for SSA, it managed to get an approval of Rs 58.03 crore only.

Officials of the Education Department said the infrastructure projects proposed for schools in the current financial year would not be affected as the expenses for the proposed projects like constructing additional classrooms and new school buildings would be made through the state budget.

“For instance, a budget of Rs.23 crore has already been sanctioned by the Chandigarh Administration for the construction of two new schools at Dhanas. More infrastructure projects will soon get the nod,” said a senior official. He said, “There has been cut in the SSA budget not only for the UT but also for all the states. The state managing to get budget of over Rs 58 crore sanctioned is a major achievement.”

He said, “The foremost reason for cut is that the Central Government is shifting its focus from the SSA to the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), which is meant for classes IX and X.”

“The budget approval meeting of the RMSA has already been held for Chandigarh and the education department was expecting a good financial support under this scheme,” said the sources.

Among the core development expenses approved under the SSA, for providing free textbooks to children UT got Rs 1.45 crore, for school uniforms Rs 1.16 crore and a similar grant will be borne by the local administration also.

The Central Government has also approved Rs 2.84 crore for the development of children who have never been to schools and Rs 99 Lakh and Rs 24 Lakh, respectively for the Cluster Resource Centres and Urban Resource Centres.

As far as salary portion is concerned, Rs 48 crore has been approved for nearly 1,300 SSA teachers working in Chandigarh. Massive cut is for the infrastructure projects only. Against Rs 25 crore demanded by the Education Department for making additional classes and schools, only Rs 3 Lakh has been approved by the project approval committee of the Central Government. All the projects have been deferred for the next year.

Development expenditures



Salary of SSA teachers

Free Textbooks

School uniforms

Out of School Children

Cluster Resource Centres

Urban Resource Centres

Rs 48 crore

Rs 1.45 crore

Rs 1.16 crore

Rs 2.84 crore

Rs 99 Lakh

Rs 24 Lakh



NSUI help desk opened at PU amid protest
Tribune News Service

Students argue with police officials during the inauguration of the NSUI help desk at Panjab University in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Parvesh Chauhan

Chandigarh, June 26
Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Oscar Fernandes inaugurated the help desk of the National Student Union of India (NSUI) at Panjab University amid protest. Members of all the student parties raised slogans against the PU authorities for allowing more than 10 people at the help desk of the NSUI during the Union Minister’s visit.

The PU had decided that there should not be more than ten party members at the help desk. All the student parties raised an objection after witnessing more than ten people on the help desk. The members of all the parties raised slogans against the PU officials demanding that the university should ensure that the rules are followed. “The university authorities play double standards as after instructing that no outsider will be allowed on the help desks; the desk of NSUI was full of outsiders,” said a member of the SOPU party.

The Chandigarh police and PU authorities rushed to the scene to pacify the agitating students. The police was deployed on the campus to avoid any untoward incident.

ABVP leader Dinesh Chauhan said that they didn’t have any problem with the minister visiting the campus; however, allowing outsiders at the help desk against the rules is not acceptable. “The university and Chandigarh police always make tall claims of making the campus violence free; however, when it comes to restricting the involvement of outsiders in the student politics the university fails in every aspect,” said Chauhan.

Panjab University Students Union (PUSU) president Yadwinder Singh said that by allowing ministers to visit the campus for inaugurating the help desks clearly points that the university has been made platform for national politics. “University politics should be restricted between the students only, involving the national leaders spoils the spirit of student elections,” Singh said.

The help desk of the PUSU party was also inaugurated by its founder member Jaskaran Brar.



PU declares admission, fee payment schedules
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Panjab University (PU), Chandigarh, has declared the detailed admission and fee payment schedule for the admissions in the morning and evening sessions of three-year Law degree course. Students, who qualify the common entrance test, can apply for admission till July 3.

PU officials said the provisional merit list of candidates for interview for admission to LLB would be put at the Department of Laws at 6 PM of July 14 and the interview of candidates of all categories in the general merit list would be held on July 15.

Provisional merit list of all reserved categories except sports category will be displayed on July 16. The interview for SC/ST will be held on July 17, interviews for Backward Class, Physically Handicapped, Terrorist Victims and Freedom Fighter Category will be held on July 18.

For the sports category, provisional merit list will be displayed at on July 18 and interviews for sports category would be conducted on July 19.

Fees should be deposited by selected candidates on July 18 till 4.30 pm. Fees of the students selected under reserved categories except sports will be deposited on July 19 till 1 pm. Payment of fee by selected candidates under sports category will be done on July 20 till 12 noon.

Waiting list of all categories except the sports will be displayed on July 19 at 6 pm. The selected candidates of the waiting list will be able to deposit fees on July 20 till 12 noon. Payment of fees for left out seats for all categories will be done on July 20 from 2.30 pm to 4.30 pm.



Students’ wait for OMR sheets, answer keys continues
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
Despite submitting fees, several students from the city are still waiting for their OMR sheet, answer key and calculation sheet for the JEE Mains from the CBSE.

Last month, many city students claimed that they got less marks in the JEE (Main) exam, the result of which were announced on May 7. The exam was held both offline and online for admission in engineering courses in NITs and engineering courses across the country. The problem occurred for the students who took online exam from April 22 to April 25. Following the objections raised by the students, the CBSE, on May 13 decided to provide a copy of the OMR sheet, answer key and calculation sheet for the JEE Mains against Rs 500.

Sahil Soni, one of the JEE aspirants from Chandigarh, said despite submitting the fee, the CBSE has yet not sent the required documents that could help them in evaluating their performance in the exam. “I am fully convinced that I have been given 15 scores less than I expected,” he said. Other students said they had matched their response sheet uploaded on the CBSE’s website with answer keys issued by various coaching centres and found that they had scored 10-15 marks less in the JEE (Main) result.

Karan Atri, another student, said: “the CBSE should not take this issue lightly as it will soon announce the final ranking of the JEE mains. It should send the answer keys and the OMR sheets before its declaration so that their doubts should be removed.”

Another student said the CBSE should upload the answer keys of both offline and online JEE (Main) exams to remove the confusion.



Tentative merit list for BCom to be out on July 1
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
Over 6,400 students have submitted hard copy of their admission applications for centralised admission of BCom in various Panjab University (PU) colleges at Chandigarh. As many as 7,849 students had registered for the online admission, out of them 6,926 students had submitted the complete online admission forms.

PU officials said that all the students, who have submitted their forms by hand or by post, can verify their acknowledgement number on their email as today was the last date for the submission of hard copy of the admission form for the 1,120 seats in co-education colleges, 770 seats in women colleges and 140 Seats in men’s college in Chandigarh.

The tentative merit List will be displayed on July 1. The objections to the merit list can be filed from July 2 to July 4. Final tentative merit list will be declared by July 8. First physical counselling for the colleges situated in Chandigarh, including the Department of Evening Studies, Panjab University, will be held on July 11 to July 14 at the Law Auditorium in Panjab University.



Education briefs
Teachers' training programme concludes

The Annual Residential Teachers' Training Programme of the Shemford Group of Schools concluded. As many as 200 school heads and teachers participated in the programme. The training programme imparting comprehensive and rigorous training to the teachers so that they can shape up the careers of children and prepare them for the world beyond school. The four-day programme had several enlightening sessions. The programme also imparted insights to the teachers about teaching philosophy at present times and latest trends in education.

Students bring laurels

Students of DAV Model School, Sector 15A, Chandigarh, brought laurels by bagging four out of first five positions in UT in the ECEd (Diploma in early Childhood Education), the result of which was declared by State Institute of Education, Sector 32,Chandigarh, on Tuesday. Kanica Sood stood first with 89.13 per cent, Shakun was placed second with 87.93 per cent, Poonam Kumari got 86.46 per cent and secured fourth position. — TNS



MSc students’ protest enters third day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 26
MSc students continued their strike outside the Vice-Chancellor’s office for the third day. Failing to get any reply from the university authorities, the students sat on hunger strike.

The students are protesting against the university’s decision to re-conduct paper I, II and III of MSc (chemistry) Semester IV exam which were held in one of the colleges prior to the date sheet.

Students said it was not their fault as the goof-up was made by the college and the university rather than taking action against the college has decided to re-conduct the exam.

There are total 210 students who will have to re-appear in the examination.



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