C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Taverns charging more than MRP challaned
600ml soda bottles being sold between RS 25 and RS 30 against the price of RS 12 and RS 15
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

The rate list at one of the taverns of Sector 32 and the MRP of a soda bottle (encircled).
The rate list at one of the taverns of Sector 32 and the MRP of a soda bottle (encircled). Tribune photos: S Chandan

Chandigarh, July 12
By definition, or even by law, charging more than the maximum retail price (MRP) is a criminal offence under the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011.
The rules state that the consumer should pay exactly the same price as printed on the packaged commodity, no matter where it is sold or served.

Yet, several taverns attached with liquor vends in the city were found charging Rs 30 for a 600ml bottle of soda against the MRP of Rs 15. Another popular brand of soda bottle was being sold for Rs 25 against the MRP of Rs 12. When confronted as a consumer, the stock reply from the staff was that the same price was being charged at taverns across the city.

On getting a whiff of the wrong practice, a surprise raid conducted by the Legal Metrology Department revealed that most of taverns were selling a 600ml soda bottle for anything between Rs 25 and Rs 30 against the MRP of Rs 12 or Rs 15.

Following the instructions of Controller Legal Metrology Mahavir Kaushik, a team led by inspector Kamal Sarin raided taverns in Sectors 17, 22 and 34 and issued challans. However, the water bottles were being charged as per the MRP.

Defending the overcharging, operators of taverns said huge costs involved in running the premises was forcing them to charge more.

“When we introduced ourselves as officials of the Legal Metrology Department and asked them about the MRP violations, the operators of the taverns argued that it was not a violation and the same price was being charged across the city,” said a raiding official. Ajay Jagga, an expert on consumer affairs, said it was unethical to charge more than the MRP. The Director, Consumer Affairs-cum Deputy Commissioner, is bound to take action in such cases. Besides, the taverns were not adhering to the conditions laid down by the Excise Department under the Excise Policy, 2013-2014.

The law point

The Section 18 of the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011, states: “No retail leader or other person, including manufacturer, packer, importer and wholesale dealer, shall sale any commodity in packed form at a price exceeding the retail sale price thereof. The penalty, as applicable in Chandigarh, can go up to Rs 4,000.”



Chargesheet against Deshraj
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Within four days after the CBI received prosecution sanction from the Ministry of Home Affairs against IPS officer Deshraj Singh, the investigating agency today submitted a chargesheet in the corruption case registered against the UT police SP in the CBI court.

The CBI filed the chargesheet against Deshraj Singh under various Sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act. On October 18, 2012, the CBI had arrested UT Superintendent of Police (City) Deshraj Singh while accepting a bribe of Rs 1 lakh at his Sector 23 residence. The complainant in the case is also a UT policeman, SHO of the Sector 26 police station Anokh Singh.

A 2008-batch IPS officer, Deshraj Singh was accepting the bribe from inspector Anokh Singh for giving him a clean chit in two departmental inquiries pending against him.

The complainant had alleged that the Superintendent of Police had demanded Rs 5 lakh from him to give him a clean chit in the two cases, but the deal was struck for Rs 2 lakh. The SHO came to deliver the first instalment of Rs 1 lakh to the SP when the CBI had laid a trap and arrested Deshraj.

In the chargesheet, the CBI has attached the recorded conversation of the accused and the complainant in which the demand for the bribe was made by the SP.

The CBI have also attached voice samples of Deshraj Singh, which will be sent to the CFSL for matching with the recorded conversation and the reports will be put before court as evidence.

The recorded conversation is not telephonic and recording has been done during meeting with the SP when he allegedly demanded bribe.

Deshraj was granted bail in December by the High Court. The case is now fixed for next hearing on August 2.

The CBI got the prosecution sanction from the MHA earlier this week which was attached with the chargesheet.


the case

The CBI filed the chargesheet against Deshraj Singh under various Sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act. On October 18, 2012, the CBI had arrested UT SP (City) Deshraj while accepting a bribe of ~1 lakh at his Sector 23 residence. The complainant in the case is SHO of the Sector 26 police station Anokh Singh.



CFSL retrieves SMSes from Jyoti’s cellphone
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 12
The Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) has retrieved messages and images deleted from Jyoti's mobile phone. The Panchkula police will produce the retrieved SMSes and images as evidence against Doon MLA Ram Kumar Chaudhary in the court.

The accused had deleted SMSes, images and video clips from Jyoti's mobile phone after allegedly killing her.

"As the mobile phone was being used by Jyoti since 2010 and both Chaudhary and the victim were in constant touch with each other, the retrieved messages and images will help in nailing the accused. We have received a communiqué from the CFSL about the retrieved proofs,” said an official.

The police is now waiting for the CCTV camera footage of a nursing home in Sector 20, Chandigarh, where Chaudhary had reportedly gone with Jyoti to get her abortion done. The CCTV system has been sent to the CFSL, Madhuban.

Police sources said the CCTV camera recordings were sent to the laboratory as it was suspected that some footage might had been deleted which could show Chaudhary and Jyoti visit at the nursing home.

Meanwhile, the court will decide on Chaudhary's bail application July 22.



Snag in 66kV line hits power supply
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Many sectors in the city were without power this afternoon following a fault in the 66kV line at Sector 18. The fault was rectified in the evening.
Residents of Sectors 7, 8, 17, 18, 19, 22, 27 and 30 were without power for four hours, between 2 pm and 6 pm.

UT Superintending Engineer (Electricity) MP Singh said they came to know about the fault around 2 pm. Technicians were immediately sent to rectify the fault, he added.

Rajesh Mehta, a resident of Sector 18, said there was no power in their area from 2 pm to 6 pm.

An official of the Electricity Department said the problem occurred due to overloading. Most of the consumers have not declared their actual load, he said. Last year, only 7,000 consumers approached the department to declare the actual load.

Power employees hold rally

Employees of the UT Electricity Department on Friday held a rally near the power office in Sector 18 to press for their long-pending demands. The union also deferred its strike to July 30. 



4-yr jail for 2 Estate Office employees
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
The Court of District and Sessions Judge SK Aggarwal today sentenced two employees of the UT Estate Office to four years imprisonment in a case of corruption pertaining to a rehabilitation scheme.

The two convicts, Ram Kishan, a sub-inspector with the Enforcement Wing, and Rama Kant Mishra, a clerk with the Estate Office, were also imposed a fine of Rs 16,000 each by the court.

They were charged in a case of cheating and corruption dating back to 2004. The two committed gross irregularities during the allotment of sites in Vikas Nagar Mauli Jagran under rehabilitation scheme of Labour Colony, Sector 31, with the connivance of bogus allottee and officers of estate office.

The Vigilance Cell of the UT police had unearthed the scam in August, 2004, when the two who were booked for forging documents like ration card while processing the application forms for the allottees meant to benefit under the slum rehabilitation scheme. The sites used to be allotted in name of bogus persons and the two used to further sell off the site using the power of attorney of those plots. As per the prosecution case, irregularities like bogus ration card, forged survey number, affixing bogus photographs other than original allottess on application form for allotment of site was done by the two. Both Ram Kishan and Rama Kant forged a number of documents pertaining to allotment. A total of six chargesheets of corruption and cheating were filed in court against the two under sections 419, 420, 467, 468, 471 of the IPC and various Sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.


8 managing committee members resign
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Succumbing to the pressure mounted by students, eight of the total eleven members resigned from the managing committee of the Homeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Sector 26.

The students had demanded their resignation following the notice served by Panjab University denying the college from holding fresh admissions due to its failure to appoint adequate number of faculty members.

The students, who had been demanding the appointment of teachers, had a meeting with the managing committee on July 11. However, only three members turned up for the meeting and failed to pacify the students.

The students then demanded that the committee members should tender their resignation, following which the three members who attended the meeting resigned at the spot.

Sources said the students then went to residences of all the other members and got resignation letters from five of them.

“Of the remaining three members, one is unwell, one has gone abroad and the third refused to tender resignation,” students said.

The managing committee members are elected by the 48-member society of the college for three years.

The college students, meanwhile, continued with their protest by boycotting classes for the third day. “We will not give up till the college takes steps for the appointment of faculty,” they said.

Principal KK Dhiman refused to comment on the issue.



Lillete returns to city with strong feminine script
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Acclaimed theatre artiste Lillete Dubey, who failed to make much of an impression with her last production in the city, August: Osage County, delighted the city audiences with her latest offering, Where Did I leave my Purdah, staged at Tagore Theatre this evening.

The play, organised by Durga Das Foundation and sponsored by The Tribune, had everything from a strong script to better execution, which would remain the talking point in the cultural quarters of the city for days to come.

While ‘August: Osage County’ was set in a remote town of the USA with an ensemble of too many talented actors stuffed into one play, today’s play, scripted by Mahesh Dattani, had a strong feminine script portraying the political and social issues of yesteryears through a passionate tale of theatre actor Nazia (portrayed by Lillete).

All the actors went under the skin of their characters, doing justice to the script. The play kept traversing time, unraveling the complexities in the life of Nazia Sahiba, a theatre actress of the pre-partition era.

It started from a point when Nazia was trying to revive her dance theatre company with theatre changing as a medium. She, who considered theatre as her whole world, however, could not ignore the harsh realities of the past haunting her constantly.

What came along was her tale simmering with partition turmoil, her troubled marriage, some hidden truths and her existence as an artiste.

The play traced her personal and professional journey, as to how she moved to India during the partition and was forced to leave behind her ‘purdah’ to set up her theatre company in India.

Nazia in the 1980s and in 1950s came out as two different women. In 1950s she tried to forget her painful past and move on with the times. In 1980s, however, her past came back to haunt her, questioning her existence all the time.

In the end, Nazia’s return for her dream production, Shaku, a contemporary adaptation of Shakuntala, not only marked a new beginning for her as an artiste but as a person as well.

The cast included Lillete Dubey, Soni Razdan, Neha Dubey, Sid Makkar and Priyanka Karunakaran.



Chandigarh on dengue alert
Health Dept declares July as dengue awareness month
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
The UT Health Department has declared July as the dengue awareness month and launched preventive measures to shield the city against the disease.
While malaria cases have come down significantly this year, the consistent virus mutation may pose risk of dengue contraction in the city, despite precautions, warned experts.

So far, no dengue case has been reported in the city, but suspected cases have been reaching city hospitals from the region. While one suspected case of dengue was reported in PGIMER from Jammu and Kashmir, last week, a suspected dengue death was reported two days ago at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32.

The Chandigarh unit of National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP) organised a health awareness camp on Thursday at Motor Market, Sector 48.

Dr Mukhmohit Singh, epidemiologist, said the various activities were going on to prevent and control of malaria, dengue and water-borne diseases. He appealed that everyone should take precautionary measures. As many as 217 coolers were checked. Larval eating (gambusia) fish were also released in various water collection points in Sector 50.

Preventive measures
  • Drain out water from coolers once in a week
  • Cover your water tanks
  • Wear full sleeves clothes in the evening
  • During fever, report to the nearest dispensary 



GMADA, MC fail to weed out wild growth
Our Correspondent

Mohali, July 12
With Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) and the Municipal Corporation failing to take any effective measure, parthenium hysterophorus, locally known as Congress Grass, and other wild growth is rapidly spreading in the town.

Congress grass grows in an open space near houses in Phase V, (right) wild growth along roads in Sector 71; and (below) Industrial Area, Phase VII, in Mohali.
Congress grass grows in an open space near houses in Phase V, (right) wild growth along roads in Sector 71; and (below) Industrial Area, Phase VII, in Mohali. Tribune photos: Vicky Gharu

The weed abounds green belts, vacant plots, parks and open spaces as well along the roads.

The corporation has the responsibility of removing the wild growth from residential areas and the entire industrial area, while it is the job of GMADA to keep most of the green belts, parks and open spaces free from weed.

The harmful weed causes skin allergies and can also lead to asthma.

Sukhminder Singh Barnala, a former municipal councilor who resides in Phase XI, said Congress Grass growing along slip roads at certain chowks affected the visibility of commuters, leading to accidents.

Barnala said he had met the Chief Administrator of GMADA, who is also the Municipal Corporation Commissioner, in connection with the issue.

The slip roads and parks where children play should be given priority in case any drive was launched to remove Congress Grass, he said.

Barnala said the officials concerned had said that labourers had been deployed to remove the wild growth. He said despite this no noticeable improvement had been seen.



Disaster mgmt plan need of the hour: P’kula SDM
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 12
The last day of three-day training programme on the implementation of district disaster management plan, Panchkula, conducted by the Haryana Institute of Public Administration, Gurgaon, was conducted under the chairmanship of Panchkula SDM RK Singh.

Singh said the significance of disaster management plan at district level was the need of the hour when the country and the world were facing various disasters, such as the flash floods in Uttarakhand.

The hazard and vulnerability profile of the district was discussed with the frontline departments. The officers were sensitised about the possible level of risk that the district and its population might face in different vulnerable pockets of the district.



RS 5.66 crore funds for schools in Mohali
Our Correspondent

Mohali, July 12
The Punjab Government will spend more than Rs 5.66 crore on the development of the basic infrastructure of government schools in the district.
Additional Deputy Commissioner Parveen Kumar Thind said this amount had been released to various schools and work was also in progress.

He said Rs 95.71 lakh would be spent on the construction of 17 extra rooms. Each room would cost Rs 5.63 lakh. Construction work on these rooms in schools was in progress.

Over Rs 2.07 crore were being spent on setting up science laboratories at various schools. Each laboratory would cost Rs 6.10 lakh.

A sum of Rs 4 lakh would be spent on the construction of toilets in four different schools. The schools which lacked the toilet facility would be taken up on priority.

Thind said Rs 4.73 lakh had been released for the repair and renovation work in schools. An amount of Rs 56.10 lakh had been received for the construction of the school building at Senior Secondary School, Dera Bassi. He said Rs 2.55 crore had been released to 51 schools for the construction of art and craft rooms.



Maluka asks DEOs to reach consensus
Our Correspondent

Mohali, July 12
The Punjab Government has drawn up a comprehensive plan to further upgrade the infrastructure and quality of education in government schools of the state.
A high-level meeting was held here today in this regard under the chairmanship of Education Minister Sikander Singh Maluka. Disclosing this, an official spokesperson said the district education officers from various districts were present during the meeting.

The Minister invited suggestions from the officers for improving the quality of education.

The DEOs put forward several recommendations and apprised the Minister of hurdles and bottlenecks they had been facing in imparting education, the spokesperson said. The Minister assured the officers that there would not be any shortage of infrastructure, education material and teachers in schools, he said.

The issue of merger of primary schools was also discussed. Maluka directed the officers to take every aspect into consideration to reach a consensus. Teachers, he said, should be transferred in accordance with the transfer policy in a transparent manner.



Theft bid foiled
Thieves tried to enter jewellery shop in Panchkula
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 12
A theft attempt was made at Bhagwati Jewellers, Sector 20, Panchkula, late last night. Before the miscreants could steal any valuable from the shop, they fled hearing the siren of the patrolling PCR.

The Station House Officer of the Sector 20 police station, Inspector Pradeep Kumar, said, “The miscreants tried to enter the shop from the rear side and even took out three to four bricks of the wall but failed.”

He further added, “There was a PCR patrolling in the market and two policemen were on foot. We will nab them soon.The police said that a gang of thieves was suspected to be on the prowl in Panchkula.

It was just three days ago when thieves decamped with cash and jewellery worth lakhs when they struck at the residence of Shyam Lal Mangla in Sector 15, Panchkula. Their modus operandi was same as in the theft at BJP leader Krishan Dhull’s residence in Sector 12A, Panchkula.The police has not been able to make any breakthrough in any of the theft cases so far.



Blood donation camp at PGI today

Chandigarh, July 12
The Thalassemic Children Welfare Association (TCWA) will be organising a blood donation camp, the fifth in the series of six donation camps, at Zakir Hall, Block A, PGI, tomorrow. The 135th Blood Donation Camp will be held from 8.30 am to 1.30 pm.

The camp will be inaugurated by Dr. Yash Paul Sharma, head, department of cardiology, PGIMER, at 10.30 am. Voluntary donors, social organisations are welcome to donate blood for the welfare of the thalassaemics. — TNS



Punjab employees have edge over UT counterparts
Delay in notification regarding revision of pay scales affecting their chances of getting higher category houses
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Several employees of the Chandigarh Administration, who are in the queue for allotment of higher category of houses, are left in the lurch due to a delayed notification regarding revision of pay scales.

The affected employees falling in the group B (who are drawing the grade pay of Rs 5,000 and above) are posted in different departments of the Chandigarh Administration.

As a result, the Punjab Government employees, posted in and around Chandigarh, have become eligible for the higher category of houses under various categories of general pool houses of the UT, ahead of their UT counterparts.

“There are around 200 such employees whose are being affected by the delayed notification”, said an affected UT employee.

The issue has already been taken up with the Home Secretary-cum-Secretary of the House Allotment Committee and Secretary, Personnel. “If the UT Administrator is empowered to adopt Punjab rules, then the notification for revision of pay scales should have been adopted in 2006 instead of 2009. It has been done purposely to benefit the Punjab government employees”, allege the affected employees.

Seeking removal of disparity by adopting the notification over the revision of the pay scales with effect from January 1, 2006, instead of July 7, 2009, the affected employees have sought that they be brought at par with their Punjab counterparts in terms of allotment of government accommodation under the general pool houses. 



MC sanitation panel approves agendas
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
A meeting of the Sanitation Committee of the Municipal Corporation was held today under the Chairmanship of HC Kalyan in which various agendas were approved.
At the meeting, the members approved procurement of various types of tyres, tubes and flappers for vehicles of the Medical Officer and members said that the agenda be prepared for the auction of old tyres.

Besides, other agendas, which were approved, were hiring of 20 tractor-trolleys, concrete base would be constructed around the garbage bins at various locations in the city. The committee members were of the view that the sanitation staff should also clean the paved area in markets and along various roads. 



BJP workers take out vehicle rally
Expose Pawan Bansal’s role in railgate scam; call CBI a ‘caged parrot’ of the UPA government
Tribune News Service

Vehicles stuck in traffic jam near Sector 34.
Vehicles stuck in traffic jam near Sector 34.

Chandigarh, July 12
The Chandigarh unit of the BJP today organised a vehicle rally in the city to end the ‘Black Week’, which was being observed by the party against corruption by the UPA, especially the railgate scam.

The rally, which started around 11 am from Sector 34, ended around 2 pm at Sector 17 Plaza. The rally had thousands of party workers with more than 400 cars, two-wheelers, motorcycles besides trucks, tractors and other vehicles with black flags, black headbands and some of the BJP workers were even wearing black attires.

BJP national general secretary and MP JP Nadda led the rally besides other leaders, including Chandigarh BJP president Sanjay Tandon, former Union Minister Harmohan Dhawan, and former MP Satya Pal Jain.

The rally went through various sectors of the city, from Sector 34 exhibition ground, 35, 36, 37, 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 30, 29, 28, 27, 19 and18 before reaching the Sector 17 Plaza. At the Sector 17, some heated arguments were also exchanged between the police and BJP workers, as the police had initially stopped them from entering the Plaza. But later, they allowed the BJP workers.

Addressing the people at Sector 17, Nadda said that the UPA government had crossed all previous landmarks in corruption. The CBI had was like a “caged-parrot”, which had become the Congress Bureau of Investigation and acted on the whims of its Congress masters to keep the corrupt Congressmen out of reach of law. It had become evident in the so called clean chit given to the former Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal in the railgate scam, he added.

Sanjay Tandon said that the railgate scam had exposed “mama-bhanja” nexus in the eyes of the public, but due to the UPA pressure on the CBI instead of being chargesheeted, Bansal had been made a witness.

Tandon questioned that if he knew nothing then how could he be a witness? And if he knew something, then he was clearly an accused. Anybody could understand that, he added.

Harmohan Dhawan said that by not including Bansal’s name in the chargesheet as an accused, the CBI had proved that it worked only for the Congress. He added that it was a successful rally. 

Workers violate traffic rules

In the BJP’s vehicle rally, BJP workers violated traffic rules. They were riding two-wheelers without helmets and they were triple riding. People were seen driving four -wheelers without seat belts. Traffic jams inconvenienced residents in the city

Play ‘Kalyugi Mama Bhanja’ performed

The art and culture cell of the party staged a street play at the Sector 17 Plaza and several other places in the city. The plays, “Kalyugi Mama Bhanja” and “Yahan Sab Chalta Hai” were meant to expose former Railway Minister Pawan Bansal’s role in the railgate scam. Abhishek Sharma, who is the in charge of the art and culture cell, said that there were seven artistes who enacted the play.



Charges framed against SI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
The CBI court today framed charges of corruption against UT police Sub-Inspector (SI) Naveen Sharma, who was caught taking a bribe of Rs 5 lakh last year.

Then posted with the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the UT police, SI Naveen along with a conduit was arrested for demanding and taking a bribe of Rs 5 lakh from a Ludhiana resident to "settle" his wife’s bail application in court. The CBI had then arrested SI Naveen Sharma, brother of an acting judge of the Districts Court and son of a retired Chandigarh police DSP.

The CBI court also framed charges against a conduit, SN Aneja, a former SBI employee and resident of Swastik Vihar in Panchkula, who acted as a mediator and facilitated the bribe deal. The SI had managed to flee at the time of the CBI trap in his Innova, but was later arrested by the Panchkula police. The CBI arrested him on Septembe 6, 2012. The accused is out on bail.

CBI officials said, the SI was demanding a bribe for not opposing the bail application of Gurvir Shergil, Sukhbir’s wife, which was to come up for hearing in the court on that day. An amount of Rs 10 lakh was initially demanded and the deal was later settled for Rs 5 lakh.

The investigating agency had also recovered an amount of Rs 9 lakh from the Sector 46 residence of SI Naveen Sharma following his arrest. Besides, 41 foreign-made liquor bottles were also seized from his residence. The CBI acted on a complaint submitted by Sukhbir Shergill on September 4 to the SP, Anti-Corruption Branch, CBI, against the SI. In his complaint, he stated that a case was registered on a complaint of BS Dhaliwal against him on April 19, 2012. Naveen Sharma was the investigating officer in the case and when the accused met him, the SI gave him reference of SN Aneja for any help in the case.

Shergill met Aneja many times and on certain occasion SI Naveen also joined them. The court then issued non-bailable warrants against Shergill and his wife after they failed to appear in court on August 24. The accused then applied for bail of his wife, which was fixed for hearing on that day. Shergill was told by Aneja that he would discuss the matter with Naveen Sharma to get bail for his wife in the matter and for this he had to pay a handsome amount as bribe. The deal was then setlled and the CBI laid a trap and arrested the SI.

The case is now listed for next hearing on August 19.



Mohali SSP’s escort vehicle hit, two cops injured

Chandigarh, July 12
Two Punjab police personnel attached to the security of Mohali SSP were injured when a car hit their escort police Gypsy near the Airport light point last night. The injured policemen were identified as Paramjit Singh, driver of the Gypsy, and Bhupinder Singh, a gunman of the Mohali SSP.

Two other policemen were sitting inside the Gypsy but they did not receive any injury. The mishap occurred when the Gypsy overturned after being hit by an Alto car driven by Khem Singh, a resident of Raipur Khurd village, near Sector 31. The incident took place when the escort Gypsy was returning from Zirakpur to Mohali and Khem was coming from Raipur Khurd side around 11.30pm. Two injured were rushed to GMCH-32 and discharged after preliminary treatment. The medical examination of Khem confirmed the presence of alcohol in his body. He has been booked. — TNS



Panchkula spic and span for CM’s visit
But encroachments, stray cattle were back on roads once he left the city
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

(Above) Illegal encroachments removed at Sector 14, Panchkula.
(Below) MC vehicle on its way to clear encroachments in Panchkula.

Panchkula, July 12
Even as encroachments and stray cattle menace is rampant in the city, residents got a look of clean Panchkula today (only for a while) when Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda arrived in the city to preside over a function in Sector 14 here today.

The situation was back to square one after Hooda left the city.

Hooda was the chief guest for the State-Level Farmers’ Club award function on the eve of NABARD’s 32nd foundation day at Kisan Bhawan, Sector 14, today.

Before Hooda arrived, the official vehicle of the Panchkula Municipal Corporation was seen removing stray cattle and clearing the encroachments in the area.

Not even a single fruit and vegetable vendor was seen alongside the main roads.

But in the afternoon when Hooda left, the stray cattle were again seen roaming, particularly on the dividing road of Sector 17 and Sector 8.

Fruit vendors were back along side the roads selling mangoes, peaches.

“The vendors selling fruits on the main roads often lead to traffic jams. But this morning, there were no such encroachments and it was convenient to drive down. When I returned in the evening, I was surprised to see that fruit vendors were back again alongside the roads,” said Rakesh Matoria, a resident of Sector 14, Panchkula.

Mandi Payment Scheme to be launched

Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said that the Haryana Government had decided to launch the ‘Mandi Payment Scheme’ in the state after the name of former Chief Minister of Joint Punjab Sardar Partap Singh Kairon for the benefit of farmers. The scheme will be launched to ensure that the farmers got remunerative prices of their produce. The ‘Mandi Payment Scheme’ will bring more transparency in the transaction of farmers’ produce in the mandis. Under the scheme, Mandi Debit Card will be made available to all the farmers. The cards fitted with smart chip will enable them to know about the actual price and weight of their produce at the time of selling their produce in the mandis. 


Fire extinguishers renewed for CM’s visit

Even the fire extinguishers at the Kisan Bhawan were renewed by the authorities on Friday. They had not bothered to do so till date and they renewed them only because the Chief Minister was coming at the venue. 

Hygiene given a miss

Dough balls meant for making chapattis for the Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and other officials’ lunch became a treat for flies. Hygiene was given a miss while cooking.



‘Hawan’ for Uttarakhand flood victims
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
To show solidarity with Uttarakhand flood victims, the Gopal Gaulokdham Sewa Samiti (Kaimbwala) will organise community hawan and prayers on July 14 to pay tribute to those who died in the natural calamity.

A member of the samiti said that their two active members had also gone missing. 



PU terminates services of daily wage employee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
On the revelation made by a Right to Information (RTI) activist, Panjab University has terminated the services of a daily wage employee and also recommended police action against him for submitting fake certificate to secure a regular job at the university. The accused had been working in the university for the past three years.

RTI activist RK Singla said the accused, Raj Kumar, who had been working as a clerk on the daily-wage basis since 2009, had applied for the post of dresser at the PU health centre in response to an advertisement (No. 1/2013).

“In his application submitted for the post of daily-wage clerk in 2009, he claimed to have passed BA in second division from Awadh University, Uttar Pradesh, in 2008, whereas in another application submitted recently for the post of dresser, he claimed that he had passed only Class XII, that too the last year,” Singla said.

Singla, who procured the information under the RTI, said the accused has submitted different certificates of matriculation and Class XII for the posts of clerk and dresser.

The PU authorities swung into action and formed a committee to probe into the matter only after they received an RTI query on June 4, although the matter was brought to their notice on May 24.

PU Registrar AK Bhandari said the employees’ services were terminated and the case had been forwarded to the police for the registration of an FIR against him.



General category seats of 4 colleges filled on first day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
counselling for admissions to 85 per cent seats of BCom reserved for the city students in 11 city colleges commenced today with GGDSD College, Sector 32, and DAV College, Sector 10, remaining the top-choice for students aspiring for the commerce stream.

Seats under the general category at GGDSD College, DAV College, MCM College, Sector 36, and Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11, were filled on the first day of counselling.

Not even a single student opted for admission under the general category to the Dev Samaj College for Women, Sector 45, while only one student in general category opted for the course at SGGS College, Sector 26, against the 171 available seats.

Similarly, against the 87 available seats in general category, GGS College for Women, Sector 26, attracted only one student.

The PG Government College, Sector 46, too saw only three students opting for the course under general category against 87 available seats, and nine students showed interest against the same number of seats in the PG Government College for Girls, Sector 42.

The PU officials said the second round of counselling would be held to fill the remaining seats.



Overwhelming response to arts courses in Panjab varsity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 12
Students who have applied for courses under the faculty of arts at Panjab University are going to face a tough competition with departments receiving a huge number of applications against the available seats.

For example, the history department has received 475 applications against 50 seats, sociology department got 532 applications against 68 seatsm, and the public administration department 515 applications against 60 seats.

The PU officials said the number of applications received for the courses in arts pointed towards its rising popularity among students.

Naveen Jaswal, an applicant hailing from Himachal Pradesh who had applied for MA in Gandhian and Peace Studies, said students from the neighbouring states found PU the best option to pursue postgraduation in arts.

Courses started in the past few years have also received an overwhelming response. The Centre for Human Rights and Duties has received 270 applications against the availability of 34 seats, while the Centre for Social Work has received 305 applications against 50 seats.

The Centre for Police Administration that has 34 seats has received 190 applications and the Department of Defiance and National Security Studies has received 302 applications against 34 seats.

University officials said the larger number of students applying for admissions also helped the varsity in selecting the best of the students for various courses. 



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