C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PGI performs first heart transplant
Gives new lease of life to heart patient from Ambala district; donor brain dead patient
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The PGIMER today performed its first heart transplant surgery on a 53-year-old patient from Ambala district, giving a new lease of life to the patient suffering from left ventricular failure. Three years after a proposal was mooted for introducing it, the facility finally available at the PGIMER, the first institution in the Northern region to have started it.

It was a few days ago that the patient was referred to the PGIMER and was diagnosed with left ventricular failure. However, the family had lost all hopes in the absence of any donor.

On Saturday evening, PGIMER doctors identified a brain dead patient in the Trauma Centre ICU whose attendants were convinced to donate organs. The recipient was immediately informed and the surgery was performed today. The patient is currently under observation in the post-operative room.

“The consent of donor’s family has not only gifted a new hope of life to the heart patient but will also save the lives or other patients who suffer from organ failures (liver and kidneys),” said a PGIMER official.

PGIMER was one of the 10 institutes in India to be identified by the Directorate General of Health Services under the National Organ Transplant Programme. So far, the institute has been successfully conducting kidney and liver transplants.

Dr KK Talwar, former Director of the PGIMER, who is credited to have initiated the programme at AIIMS, New Delhi, had proposed the facility for the PGIMER in 2010.

The institution has conducted more than 2,500 kidney transplant since the facility was first introduced in the 1980s. The facility of liver transplant, meanwhile, was introduced two years ago and six liver transplants have been conducted at the PGIMER so far.

Finding suitable organ donors, however, continues to be a challenge before the institute since there is still a stigma attached to families from whom consent is sought for donation of organs in brain dead patients. Last year, the system was streamlined for maintaining records of all brain dead patients in ICUs at the PGIMER for checking availability of organs when required.

The PGIMER recently got approval from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for starting heart transplant. The infrastructure requirements for introducing the facility of heart transplant were completed last year and the department of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery (CTVS) has been managing the programme.

What is heart transplant?

  • The procedure comprises three operations.
  • The first operation involves harvesting the heart from the donor’s body. The donor is mostly a brain-dead patient. Often these patients are accident victims with severe head injuries. A victim's organs, other than the brain, are working normally.
  • The removed organs (heart) are to be transported on ice to keep them alive till the time of implantation. For the heart to remain alive, the time is close to six hours.
  • The second operation involves the removal of the recipient's damaged or failed heart. The third operation involves implantation of the donor’s heart.
  • Under normal conditions, most patients undergoing heart transplant are sent home in one week after the surgery. 

Who needs a heart transplant?

The heart is like a pump. A patient requires a transplant when his heart can no longer pump well enough to supply blood with oxygen and nutrients to the organs of the body. This electrical system inside the heart determines the rate, rhythm and sequence of contraction of the heart muscle. There are many problems that can occur with the conduction system. 

Gesture of donor’s family

Giving consent for donating his organs, the family of the brain-dead patient (the donor) gave a new lease of life to not only one but various patients suffering from different organ failures.

The results

Patients with left ventricular failure require transplantation. The mortality rate within one year of transplant is about 80 per cent. In 50 per cent cases, the survival rate is five years

Challenges before PGIMER doctors

Even as a large number of patients with organ failures reach the PGIMER and the institution has the capacity for various transplants, finding enough organ donors has been a big challenge before the institution. To promote organ donation, the institution had, last year launched a website : www.lampoflife.com http://www.lampoflife.com. More than 200 persons have already pledged their organs on the website so far.

Stigma attached to organ donation

Attendants of a number of brain-dead patients do not pledge organs due to various religious beliefs. 



Night city seal plan gets going
4,932 vehicles checked
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In the wake of the upcoming Independence Day on August 15, the UT police undertook a major exercise “The Night City Seal Plan”, in which 106 checkpoints were set up across the city last night and 5,000 vehicles were checked. The plan aimed at checking the alertness of the staff and movements of criminals at night. Even commuters were checked for drunk driving. The plan was executed between 12 am and 3 am.

Under the supervision of UT IGP RP Upadhyaya, the night seal plan involved setting up of 38 checkpoints (police barriers) on the outgoing roads and 68 checkpoints within the city. As many as 14 DSPs and 17 Inspectors were supervising the operation. A total of 778 police personnel were pressed in to service and 59 PCR vehicles were deployed during the night seal plan.

Upadhyaya along with UT SSP Naunihal Singh personally checked the deployments and working of the police force during the operation. Four dummy vehicles/motorcycles were moved in the city to check the alertness of the force at naka points, all of them were intercepted by the police parties.

A total of 4,932 vehicles were checked, 168 challans were issued for various traffic violations. Beside this, the Chandigarh Traffic Police checked drunk driving at the various sensitive points. As many as 80 challans were issued for drunk driving and 20 challans for various other traffic violations. A total of 108 vehicles were impounded during the night city seal checking. The next night city seal plan will be conducted with the cooperation of the Panchkula and Mohali police, a senior police official said.

Drunk girl creates ruckus

High drama was witnessed at a barrier meant to check drunk driving on Saturday night when a girl in an inebriated state created a ruckus and tried to influence traffic policemen claiming that she was a daughter of an IAS officer.

The barrier was laid before PEPSU workshop near the roundabout of Sector 29. The girl, who also introduced herself as a corporate working with a Gurgaon -based office, was coming from Zirakpur side and argued with the policemen when she was asked to go through the alcohol sensor test.

The police managed to conduct alcohol sensor test on her and the presence of alcohol in the girl’s body was found to be 125mg/100 ml against the prescribed limit of 30 mg/100 ml. The police then challaned the girl and her vehicle was impounded.



Colony No. 5 residents continue to consume contaminated water
Draw water from hand pumps, putting their lives to risk
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The UT Administration has failed to take steps to prevent residents of Colony No 5 from consuming the water drawn from hand pumps. The water is unfit for human consumption. Though the administration had earlier ordered that these hand pumps should not be used, the residents continue to consume the water drawn from these pumps, putting their lives to risk.

During a visit to the Colony Number 5, it was found that every second house owner had installed a hand pump outside their premises and were pumping out the shallow water for drinking and for other purposes.

The residents said a month ago, MCofficials had painted all the hand pumps in front of their houses and had indicated that their water was unfit for consumption. The residents complained that for the past five years, they were consuming the water drawn from the hand pumps and without making any alternative arrangements, the authorities had directed the residents not to consume it.

Records of the MC revealed that there were 38 shallow water tubewells installed in various belts of the city for irrigation, which were being used by the corporation till 2007. But after the laying of tertiary water pipeline, all the tubewells were rendered non-operational by the authorities. RC Diwan, Superintendent Engineer (Public Health), Municipal Corporation, said that recently, samples of 21 shallow water tubewells out of the total 38 were taken , but all failed the test as there was a high ratio of ammonia in the water.

He said the authorities had painted all these pumps with red colour and had warned that their water should not be used for drinking purpose. When asked why the shallow water was not being used for the green belts in the city when its level, in few areas, had touched five to eight feet, posing risk to the foundation of buildings, he said the corporation had installed the tertiary water pipelines so there was no need to utilise the shallow water of the tubewells.

While the Central Groundwater Level Board in its report in 2009 and 2011 had recommended that the shallow water level was increasing and it should be utilised, the MC authorities had suggested that it should be used for secondary purposes only. 



Year gone, Fiza’s death still a mystery
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Fiza’s house in Sector 48-C, Mohali.
Fiza’s house in Sector 48-C, Mohali. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, August 4
A year after Anuradha Bali, aka Fiza Chand Mohammad's, highly decomposed body was found from her residence at Sector 48, the police has failed to get leads in the case.
The Mohali police, which has been claiming that Fiza died a natural death, is yet to close the case formally.

"It has been put on a back burner," said a senior police officer. Some of her close friends and associates stated that Fiza was murdered with a well-executed plan, but the presence of rat poison in her body indicated that she might have committed suicide.

Mohali Superintendent of Police (City) Swarndeep Singh said after investigating the case, the police had ruled out any foul play. "The case has not been closed formally. We are ready to conduct another probe, if required," said Swarndeep Singh.

Fiza's maggot-infested body was found in her bedroom on August 6 last year. As per medical experts, she died on the intervening night of August 1 and 2, 2012.

Superintendent of Police (Headquarters) Darshan Singh Mann, who was the then DSP of the area, and was the main supervisory officer of the high-profile case, claimed that he did not find any struggle marks in the room.

"I was the first one to inspect the spot. The highly decomposed body was lying on the bed, the bed sheet had not bloodstains. We had recovered a liquor bottle, a soda bottle, a packet of eatables (pakoras) and a cigarette packet from the room. No finger prints were found in the room by the forensic team," said SP Mann, adding that a special investigation team (SIT) was constituted to handle the case.

Later, the viscera report had confirmed the presence of 51 per cent of alcohol and a little quantity of aluminium phosphate (popularly known as rat poison) in her stomach.

SP Mann said the police had summoned 20-25 persons, who were closely associated with her or related to the case, to record their statements. "We had recorded the statements of Ajit Hooda, with whom she had gone to a hotel in the evening of August 1, and other close associates, including Rohit Mahajan and Dilip Mahajan, both Chandigarh-based lawyers. She was not in touch with her three sisters," said SP Mann.

Fiza was last seen alive on August 1 when she went to Hotel Rajshree in Industrial Area with Hooda in the evening. Hooda had dropped her at her residence around 7 pm. Incidentally, Hooda was the last person to have spoken to her at 10 pm the same day over phone.

While the Mohali police has categorically been denying any foul play in the case, the claims of her close associates that she could not commit suicide deepens the mystery of the presence of rat poison in her stomach as well as her death. 

Chander Mohan, HIS KIN not summoned by police

While some of Fiza's close associates, including Salim Alvi, a Bulandshahr-based social activist, and a local lawyer, Ranjan Lakhanpal, had claimed that Fiza had apprehended a threat from a Haryana politician and a relative of Chander Mohan, the Mohali police did not summon Chander Mohan or his relatives to record their statements in the case. "These people (Alvi and Lakhanpal) were trying to get mileage out of the incident," said the police.

Fiza's property case in local court

Though Fiza's three sisters, Anjali, Aditi and Monika, never showed any interest in pursuing the case to ascertain the cause of her death, they filed a petition in the Mohali District Courts staking claim to her immovable and movable property worth Rs 5 crore. The police had recovered ~2.5 crore from her house and bank lockers, 1.5 kg gold ornaments, diamond jewellery and two cars, a Honda CRV and a Santro. The value of five-marla house at Sector 48, which her parents reportedly had given her, is said to be around Rs 1.5 crore. The case is pending in the District Courts and the next hearing is scheduled for August 8.

Mystery deepens

  • The presence of rat poison in her body raised questions.
  • The police failed to summon some influential persons.
  • Fiza was a celebrity and a budding political leader and was frequented by friends and other associates everyday.
  • Her disappearance and switched-off cellphone did not set the alarm bells ringing.
  • Her neighbours, who claimed to have come to her place on August 5, did not notice the foul smell.
  • The case is yet to be closed formally. 

Fiza's life journey

July 25, 1971: Anuradha Bali was born. She was the eldest of the four daughters of Dharam Pal, a Military Engineering Services Engineer, and Savitri Devi, a housewife.

1995: Got married to a small-time transporter

2005: Appointed Assistant Advocate General of Haryana

November, 2008: Eloped with Chander Mohan

December 2, 2008: Converted to Islam, married Chander Mohan

January 29, 2009: Chander Mohan deserted her

March 14, 2009: Fiza and Chand divorced

June 8, 2012: Met leaders of the Bahujan Samaj Party and expressed her desire to contest the elections

August 1: Called up her uncle Satpal to invite him to her place on Raksha Bandhan

August 6, 2012: Her body was found from her residence in Sector 48



Panchkula police still clueless
After committing crime in city, criminals have fled to their native country Nepal
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
The Panchkula police has failed to track Nepal nationals who are involved in criminal cases in the city. As many as five most wanted foreigners incidentally all belong to Nepal, have not been traced since 1995.

Recently, on August 1, Suraj Bahadur, a Nepal national, fled after murdering his wife and seven-year-old step daughter in Pinjore. Even in this case, Panchkula police is showing its helplessness saying that the accused may have fled to his native place in Nepal and it is difficult for them to nab him from there.

Rajbir Deswal, Commissioner of Police (CP), said that they would be taking the help of Ministry of External Affairs for the purpose. “For the double murder, we will be sending police teams to Nepal to carry out investigations and try and arrest the accused. We are keen on making a break through even if the team has to stay there for a fortnight.” He further added, “Not only this, a special team will be deputed to trace all the absconding criminals.”

In most of the cases involving foreign criminals, the Panchkula police has been unsuccessful in making a breakthrough. They commit crimes here and flee to their native place and the local police ends up registering their names in the most wanted foreign criminal list.

Absconding criminals

In February 1995, a Nepal national Lachhu Bahadur, alias Lachhman Bahadur, fled to Nepal after committing a crime under Section 460 of the IPC (trespassing or house breaking at night). A case was registered at the Sector 19 police post. So far, he has not been traced. Despite the fact that Bahadur’s address was available with the police, they were unable to trace him.

Rohit, a resident of Tolpa Rapti district in Nepal fled in 1998 after committing a crime under Section 381 of the IPC (theft by clerk or servant of property in possession of master). A case was registered at the Sector 5 police station. He is yet to be nabbed. Ganga Ram Bahadur, Devi and Jeet Bahadur, all three natives of Nepal have been absconding since January 1999 under Sections 381 and 411(dishonestly receiving stolen property) of the IPC, but have not been traced till now. They hail from Tulsi Pur district of Nepal.

The latest case being, Suraj Bahadur, who fled after killing his wife and step daughter in Pinjore. Inspetcor Raj Kumar, Station House Officer of the local police station said that it would be difficult to nab him, as he may have fled to Nepal. Deswal said the accused might be hiding in Gorakhpur area.


Transfer policy remains on paper
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
As many as 200 teachers in 40 government schools in the city have not been transferred even after completing 10 years of service at a single school.
The figures were revealed by the information sought from individual government schools under the Right to Information Act, 2005.

Last year, the teachers’ transfer policy approved by Education Secretary VK Singh laid down specific guidelines for the transfer of teachers, school heads and non-teaching staff in government schools. As per the policy, school heads were to be transferred every five years, and teachers after 10 years of their stay at a school.

These guidelines were to ensure that the vast experience of teachers could be helpful for students studying at various schools. It also aimed at presenting new challenges to the teachers. However, the policy seems to have stayed on paper.

Sample this: Government Model High School, Sector 36-D, has as many as 12 teachers who have been working there for past 10-13 years. Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 37-B, meanwhile, has 10 such teachers who have worked there for over 11 years.

At GMSSS-26 (Timber Market), 11 teachers have not been transferred since 2001, and at GMSSS-10 nine teachers have stayed on for over 10 years. Two of them have been working there for as many as 22 years. Another teacher working at Government High School, Sector 7, has not been transferred since 1993.

While the longest stay at most of the schools is 11 to 12 years, a few schools including GMSSS, Sarangpur, GHS, Hallo Majra, GMSSS-28D, and GMHS-35 have teachers working there for over 14 years.

Many teachers are also set to retire after serving at a single school. An NTT teacher, for example, who was working at GMHS-31 since 2001 is on extension after retirement. Even after promotions, many trained graduate teachers, reportedly, have managed to stay at the same school.

Sources in the Education Department said if all the 107 government schools were taken into consideration, there would be over 400 teachers working at a given school for over 10 years. These include UT cadre regular teachers, contract teachers and teachers on deputation.

A school head said in the Central Government, employees are not allowed to stay at a station beyond three years. He said in Chandigarh, however, teachers enjoy a VIP status and want to work in schools near their homes.

An official said regular transfers were important to present new challenges to the teachers. They are given 10 years at a school so that they can implement their ideas and pedagogy, said the official.

Sources said transfers had become the most manipulative exercise in the department. Near and dear ones of influential people often manage to get the school of their choice.

“As observed in the recent transfers, the teachers of urban schools remain working at the city schools, and are rarely transferred to the schools on periphery or in slum areas. This trend must end,” said an official.

VK Singh, Education Secretary, UT, said all the teachers who had worked at a school for over 10 years could not be transferred in one go, as it would impact studies. “The policy will be implemented in a phased manner,” he said.



Patients’ movement crippled
Inadequate wheelchairs give attendants a tough time at GMSH-16
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Not even a single wheelchair has been kept outside the Emergency for wheel-bound patients.
Not even a single wheelchair has been kept outside the Emergency for wheel-bound patients. Tribune photos: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, August 4
At Government Multi-Speciality Hospital (GMSH), Sector 16, finding a wheelchair for a patient is not a cakewalk.
An attendant has to shuttle between buildings to find a wheelchair. The shortage of wheelchairs is not the only problem plaguing the hospital.

A survey by Chandigarh Tribune on Friday and Saturday revealed that the hospital lacks a mechanism to restore empty wheelchairs at the entry points to the New OPD Block or the Emergency.

The hospital staff, assigned the task, were seen loitering and paid no attention to the needs of wheel-bound patients inside the Emergency.

Officials in the hospital said, "Our attendants keep retrieving the wheelchairs from a number of locations to make sure that there are enough wheelchairs in patient areas," said Medical Superintendent Dr Rajiv Vadhera.

An attendant at the help desk also blamed the patients' attendants for not restoring the trolleys at the stands after using them.

The situation, however, appeared different when this correspondent visited the hospital.

Sample this: A 27-year-old woman was rushed to the Emergency on Friday morning after she complained of extreme pain in abdomen. While her husband kept looking for a wheelchair all around. The woman kept crying. As her husband yelled at one of the hospital attendants for not helping him out, the latter immediately went inside and fetched a wheelchair.

The woman had to bear the pain for 10 minutes before she was finally wheeled in.

There were other patients at the New OPD Block as well who had come for a follow-up but needed wheelchairs due to difficulty in walking or standing. However, their attendants had to hunt for wheelchairs all around.

The officials claimed to have recently added new wheelchairs. "There are around 150 wheelchairs in the hospital," they claimed.

Keeping in mind the heavy rush of patients, the number of trolleys and wheelchairs seems inadequate. More than 3,000 patients visit the GMSH OPDs everyday in addition to hundreds pouring in at the Emergency.

What is lacking

At GMSH-16, an attendant has to shuttle between buildings to find a wheelchair. This results in wastage of time, especially for those critically ill.

Stark reality

The hospital staff, assigned the task, were seen loitering and paid no attention to the needs of wheel-bound patients inside the Emergency.

Gnawing shortage

The number of trolleys and wheelchairs are inadequate. More than 3,000 patients visit the GMSH OPDs everyday in addition to hundreds pouring in at the Emergency. The hospital has only 150 wheelchairs.



Tussle between chemists affects patients at GMCH-32
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Frequent fights between two chemists at Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, have been affecting patients.
Patients' attendants are forced to rush to nearby markets to buy medicines. Recently, the two chemists entered into a heated argument over the price of a surgical item quoted differently by the two to a patient.

A patient, who underwent an intestinal surgery, is currently recovering in a private room at the hospital. A resident of Pinjore, he preferred to stay in the hospital for further consultation. His wife Rama Verma (name changed) has been facing a lot of inconvenience due to the tussle between the chemists.

"I could not get some medicines at one of the shops so I went to the other chemist who asked me to purchase all medicines from his store," Rama stated.

Similar was the ordeal of another 75-year-old patient Shyam Sundar (name changed), who visited the chemists last week and was being forced to stick to either of them for purchasing medicines.

The other day, one of the chemists sold a surgical item to a patient for about Rs 8,500, while the other one fixed its price at Rs 1,500. When the attendant complained, the chemists entered into a heated argument.

Officials at the GMCH-32 are learnt to have counselled the owners of the two shops and one of shops was even penalised (by way of a fine). "We had called both the chemists and asked them to be cooperative. We directed them to avoid substitution of prescribed medicines and also sack those employees immediately who picked up fights," said Director-Principal Atul Sachdev.

The hospital has approved the tender for the third chemist. 



It’s all spick and span at hospital
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

A spruced up park at the GMCH, Sector 32, Chandigarh, and (below) a newly installed signboard at the entry point.
A spruced up park at the GMCH, Sector 32, Chandigarh, and (below) a newly installed signboard at the entry point. Tribune photos: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, August 4
Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, has been spruced up.
A number of colourful signboards have been installed at the entry point to the hospital and the Emergency. The hospital has now started a beautification drive on the campus.

While lack of proper planning, in terms of passages, driving space and parking facilities, continues to be an issue, the move of the hospital to put up signboards is worth appreciating.

The hospital has planned to install new gates and improve security vigil at the third gate (towards doctors' residences).

Though sanitation continues to be a casualty at some parts of the hospital, outer campus has been cleaned. Chandigarh Tribune had earlier highlighted the problems of sanitation and parking space at the hospital.

"A multi-level parking has been proposed for the purpose," said Director-Principal Dr Atul Sachdev. The institution has also proposed to channelise the parking system by restricting entry to people who do not have patient cards.

Most of the parking space remains unused on the campus. 



Veterans for resuming Indo-Pak peace talks
Tribune News service

Chandigarh, August 4
Members of the Indian chapter of India-Pakistan Soldiers’ Initiative for Peace (IPSI), an association of retired defence officers of both the countries, today passed a resolution calling upon the governments of India and Pakistan to resume their bilateral dialogue for carrying forward the peace process without setting any pre-conditions.

Senior Executive Vice-President of the Indian Chapter, Lt Gen Tej Kaul, said the dialogue was the only way to improve ties between the two countries and the process that had been interrupted due to various reasons should be kick started at the earliest.

He said the time for resuming the dialogue was ideal as there was now a more friendly government in place in Pakistan and the civilian authority had more control and power than the earlier days.

The IPSI was set up in 1993 under the aegis of late Gandhian Nirmala Deshpande to explore ways for improving bilateral relations as part of the Track-II diplomacy process. The Indian chapter is headed by Lt Gen Moti Dhar, former Vice-Army Chief, while the Pakistani chapter is headed by Lt Gen Nasir Akhtar, former Commander of the Karachi-based 5 Corps. The members comprise senior officers, most of whom at one point of time have taken up arms against the other during various wars fought by the two neighbours.

About 60 retired officers from various parts of the country attended the interactive meet at Chandimandir Military Station today and discussed various issues such as the Kashmir imbroglio, cross-border terrorism, political and military development on both sides and the emerging geo-political situation in the region which had a direct impact on the security concerns of both countries as also had a bearing on bilateral relations. Of particular interest in the Afghanistan factor, where both countries have deep interests and stakes, especially in the backdrop of the impending withdrawal of US forces based there. A joint session of the IPSI is scheduled to be held in India in November where Pakistani delegates will be present. Joint sessions have been held in the past on both sides.



Satire on corruption sums up theatre fest
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Munshi Prem Chand’s acclaimed story 'Namak Ka Daroga' summed up the theatre festival at Tagore Theatre today.
Though written in 1910, Prem Chand’s story is a perfect satire on the corrupt nature of Indian society which has not changed much even post-independence.

Director P Chandershekar could manage to hold the very essence in his adaptation. The highlight of the play was the kind of musical treatment he gave to the otherwise strong text.

There were a few technical issues, but it was certainly a better performance in terms of characterisation and narrative adaptation as compared to yesterday’s performance.

As the name suggested, 'Namak Ka Daroga' was set in early 20th Century when the control over salt by the state (the Inspector Raj) led to smuggling, black-marketing, tax evasion and corruption.

Then came a new department and darogas (inspectors) to stop people from illegally trading the salt.

Munshi Vanshidhar, the main protagonist, was appointed salt inspector in Lucknow. But despite his father worldly-wise to blatantly fix his eyes on the offerings, he did his duty honestly and also got praise from the government for increasing the state revenue. However, things changed, when inspector arrested Pandit Alopidin, prominent salt trader.

But the true essence of Indian society came alive when Pandit Alopidin managed to manipulate the whole system. Vanshidhar later had to pay for his deeds. Hardly a week had passed when he received the letter of suspension.In the end, Pandit Alopidin offered Vanshidhar a high-level job in his company and the play ended there. 



Poll for top posts today
P’kula MC to elect first Deputy Mayor, Senior Mayor today
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, August 4
Panchkula will get its first Deputy Mayor and the Senior Mayor with the elections to be held at Mini-Secretariat, Sector 1, tomorrow morning.

The city has already got its newly-created Panchkula Municipal Council’s first Mayor, Upinder Kaur Ahluwalia. The race for the other two key posts is a close one.

The elections will be held through a secret ballot. Voting by all the 20 councillors will be held in the same manner as in the case of Mayoral polls.

Panchkula Deputy Commissioner Dr SS Phulia said, “The voting will take place separately for both the posts. The Deputy Commissioner of Police has also been asked
to make security arrangements.”

During the Mayoral polls conducted on July 4, councillors stood opposite each other and fielded the candidates, both being from the Congress party. Even this time, Congress-backed councillors who were not fielded during the Mayoral polls.

They are lobbying against the Congress candidates. The BJP and INLD member voted on the condition that they may also be given one of the seats.

“The Deputy Mayor and Senior Mayor will be from the Congress party but no one can predict the outcome,” said MLA DK Bansal. 



Damaged water pipe poses threat
Tribune News Service

Work in progress at Phase- VII in Mohali on Sunday.
Work in progress at Phase- VII in Mohali on Sunday. Tribune Photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, August 4
A damaged rainwater pipe poses a threat to residents at Phase VII. The leaking pipe needs to be repaired at the earliest as there is an electricity pole nearby.
Water has accumulated near residences (house no. 2718 to 2722 and 2825 to 2836) and the pole can fall anytime.

Area councillor Paramjit Singh Kahlon said the damaged pipe had created a pit and the authorities were least bothered.

Kahlon said as the pole was about to fall, we kept sand bags around it.

"Our pleas have fallen on deaf ears. The pole can fall anytime and claim a life," stated Kahlon.

He said there was a transformer nearby and the situation was going from bad to worse.

Kahlon said they had taken up the matter with the authorities asking them to check the leakage, but to no avail. "A senior official told us not to disturb him as it was a weekend. We were told to call him up on Monday," he said. 



Patients checked free-of-cost
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, August 4
To mark the ‘2nd National Bone and Joint Day’, as many as 100 patients were given free-of-cost treatment at Trinity Hospital and Medical Research Institute today.
Free-of-cost osteoporosis detection test, orthopaedic consultations, discounted lab tests and one free surgery, were conducted at the venue as a part of the programme.

The Endoscopic Spine and Knee Arthroscopy Surgeon, Dr Mohinder Kaushal, said, “Besides accidents, lack of exercise and nutritious diet has increased the cases of orthopedic diseases. Lifestyle has also a lot to do with these kind of diseases. One must follow a healthy lifestyle. The objective of observing the National Bone and Joint Day is to spread awareness in this direction.” 



Oral Hygiene Day observed
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 4
Rayat-Bahra Dental College and Hospital celebrated ‘Oral Hygiene Day’ today.
A special event was held at the campus that included motivation lectures, correct brushing technique and use of oral hygiene products. A ‘smile squad’ was also formed by Dr Yasmin Grewal to spread awareness regarding importance of oral hygiene.

The Indian Dental Association (IDA), Mohali, also organised a poster competition on the occasion. 



Rock Garden needs proper maintenance

The proposal for extension of the Rock Garden is not a welcome move. Instead, proper maintenance of the garden is the need of the hour. There are many more works like providing of CCTV cameras, dustbins, artistic walls, raising of compound walls, finishing work of the art gallery, furnishing of the hall, glazing in the verandah and extension of the office room of the director of the garden that were approved but not implemented. Visitors often complain about the lack of cleanliness and foul smell emanating from the washrooms. Even routine work like maintaining sanitation of the garden, especially the washrooms, is not being taken care of. As it is one of the most famous tourist destinations in the city, it should not be made to suffer due to the lack of maintenance.

Dr Shruti K Chawla, Chandigarh

Keep basic structure intact

The Master Plan-2031 accords the heritage status to the Rock Garden and is against the expansion of the garden. As the garden was not in the original layout plan of Le Corbusier, it has been described as a violation. Freezing further expansion will help the Chandigarh Administration in preserving the marvel created by Nek Chand. However, what is intriguing in this regard is that how much attention has been paid by the administration for its upkeep and cleanliness. Visitors have been complaining of heap of garbage near the garden for long. The road from the Sukhna Lake to the Rock Garden is littered with all kind of wrappers and other waster material.The condition of the third phase of the park is bad. This is the result of poor maintenance of the garden by the Sanitation and Health Department, which usually boast of taking several measures to keep the surrounding of the garden clean. In response to Nek Chand's advisory, the Chandigarh Administration must pay an immediate attention to keep the garden and its surroundings neat and clean.The under-developed areas in the Rock Garden must be developed with a vision that matches that of Nek Chand. Duplication of art work must be avoided and the heritage committee must propose interventions to avoid change in the basic structure of the garden.

Satish Chandra Sharma, Chandigarh

Upgrade facilities

Chandigarh draws tourists from the all over the world for its architecture, greenery, the Sukhna Lake and the Rock garden because these features can be compared with the best tourists spots in the world . The creator of this jewel in the city's crown has often pleaded with the UT Administration to live up to the basic necessities of tourists and ideally upgrade the washroom facilities, which must be done immediately.

SC Luthra, MHC, Mani Majra

Improve basic amenities

Basic amenities in the Rock Garden need to be improved. Thorough cleaning near the waterfall should be done. There should be no trace of algae and waste matter. Visitors should not be put off by its deteriorating hygiene, rather, this eminent, incomparable garden should be made, with a bit of an effort by the people as well as the administration, a great attraction for visitors.

Priya Darsh Growar, Mohali

Provide medical aid

I am also opposed to the further expansion of the Rock Garden. There is no land for the expansion and it is not advisable as it already takes too much of time to visit the the garden and people get exhausted. There should be more improvements like keeping it clean. Emergency staff and medical aid must be made available as sometimes people faint fainting in the scorching summer heat there.

RK Kapoor, Chandigarh

Focus on non-developed area

The UT Master Plan Committee and The Heritage Committee should reconsider their recommendations and reports about the Rock Garden . The administration should concentrate on the non-developed area within the boundary of the garden . The sufficient and proper maintenance of the garden will attract more tourist.

Sumesh Kumar Badhwar, Mohali

No need of expansion

The UT Master Plan Committee's recommendations against the expansion of the Rock Garden are a precious piece of advice. If the administration carries on with its expansion plans, the landmark destination will fall on the bad days, owing to the lack of proper upkeep and care. If we want it to stay with its visitor-friendly tag, we all need to work in a tandem. We should ensure that there is no littering of trash on any part of the area. Those visiting this wonderland must treat themselves as its small curators and check whatever is unwanted to keep it spic and span. The administration needs to go an extra mile to protect and preserve this world-acclaimed garden. It must develop the under-developed areas, thus adding to its beauty and bounty quotient.

Ramesh K Dhiman, Chandigarh

Make garden visitor friendly

The basic amenities are required to be improved at the garden to enable the authorities to make the place visitor friendly. The UT must not allow further expansion of the garden for the time being. The open space should be declared as inviolable land use.

Puran Kant, Chandigarh

Proper upkeep required

To make Rock Garden more visitors friendly, there is a need of a neat and clean environment. The fetid stench of paper plates, plastic cutlery, napkin, pizza boxes strewn here and there in the garden gives visitors a bad impression. It is discouraging. The garden should have an adequate supply of water, more neat and clean public toilets, carpeted roads, sitting arrangement for the tourists, a gallery shop, an art library, and an ambitious programme of special exhibits and film concert and lectures.

Ajit Singh, Canada



China, India can drive growth in advanced economies: Study
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Noted international economist Ajit Singh who holds Dr Manmohan Singh Chair at Panjab University has said that China and India are now capable of changing the characteristics of growth and employment in the advanced economies.

He expressed these views in 'India and the Eurozone: A Commentary on the Political Economy of Adjustment and Correction', a research study that appeared in 'Contributions to Political Economy', a journal published by Oxford University Press.

The research study was authored by Prof Ajit Singh, Dr Shailaja Fennell of Cambridge University and Amandeep Kaur, ICSSR scholar from the economics department of PU. In their research study, researchers expressed that World Bank Data shows that India and China were not adversely affected by financial crisis in terms of size of remittance flows during 2008-11. Contrary to the generally gloomy prediction on remittance in all developing economies, the two countries have seen a healthy contribution by the inflow of remittance.

The study is a commentary, which has mainly focused on the interaction between the Eurozone and India with a particular focus on the relationship between changes and economic conditions in these two jurisdictions.

The research study mentions that in the pre-liberalisation world, India and the Eurozone were regarded a priori as having little interaction with each other. This story changed with globalisation and relatively free capital movements. The Eurozone countries are now important trade partners and source of services and investment in India. India is also increasing its presence in terms of the outflow of foreign direct investments to the Eurozone.



‘Clear stance on issue of Pb farmers in Gujarat’

Mohali, August 4
Showing concern over the issue of Punjabi farmers in Gujarat, local Congress MLA Baklbir Singh Sidhu asked the Akali government to clear its stance on the issue. “They are the ally of NDA and should clear their stand on the issue immediately," said Sidhu.

He asked Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal to take up the issue with Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and solve it.

“If they want to support the farmers of the state, they should come out of their alliance and oppose it openly," said Sidhu. Sidhu urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to abolish all such laws that prevent people from purchasing land in other states. — TNS



Chnadigarh scan
Public meeting

The Chandigarh Territorial Mahila Congress organised a public meeting at Mauli Jagran on Sunday. The meeting was attended by Madhu Bansal, Anita Babbar, general secretary, All-India Mahila Congress, Meenakshi Choudhary, Kamlesh, chairperson, Social Welfare Board, chandigarh.

Price Crash campaign

Ketan Bhagat, author, flanked by Dr Anshu Kataria (left), chairman, Aryans Group of Colleges, and Ankur Malhotra, director, Triniti Centre for Learning, after signing an MoU in Sector 27, Chandigarh, on Sunday.
Ketan Bhagat, author, flanked by Dr Anshu Kataria (left), chairman, Aryans Group of Colleges, and Ankur Malhotra, director, Triniti Centre for Learning, after signing an MoU in Sector 27, Chandigarh, on Sunday. Tribune photo: Parvesh Chauhan 

Bharti Retail Ltd launched the Price Crash campaign across all its Easyday market stores in India. During the campaign, customers will benefit from the availability of top-quality products at lower prices across a range of categories such as apparels, electronic appliances, house ware items and food products.

MoU signed

Aryans Group of Colleges, Chandigarh, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for campus to corporate programme with the Triniti Centre for Learning and Ketan Bhagat, author, today. The MoU was signed by Dr Anshu Kataria, chairman, Aryans Group of Colleges, Ankur, director, Triniti Centre, and Ketan Bhagat. According to the MoU, the Triniti Centre will conduct a regular programme for Aryans students to make them understand industry needs in the next 4 years.

Office-bearers elected

The Chandigarh Taxi Association today elected its new office-bearers. as follows- Harneet Singh has been elected as the chairman of the association while Ramesh Ahuja has been elected as the president. Pritpal Singh and Pritam Singh were elected as vice presidents of the body. Iqbal singh and Vijay Singh are the new general secretaries of the association.

Heart diseases on the rise

“Considering today's stressful work culture and sedentary lifestyle, people in their late 20s are getting victim of cardiac arrest. In Punjab, the mortality rate due to heart diseases is higher as compare to the rate recorded in other parts of India. It has made cardiologists worried and they were searching for a solution to this problem. There was also a need to create awareness on this subject.” These views were shared by Dr Anurag Sharma, senior consultant, cardiology, Max Super Speciality Hospital, Mohali, while apeaking on cardiac problems in young today.

Students honoured

HDFC Bank, the second largest private bank in the country, felicitated the toppers in the Class XII and Class X board exams. The students were selected from 35 schools in Punjab. A total number of 203 students were honoured during the events that took place at 20 HDFC bank branches in the state.The three students who achieved the highest score in the board exams from each of the 35 schools were invited for the function.

514 donate blood

“The blood should flow in human, not in drains," said Nirankari Baba Hardev Singh Ji in his special message for the 15th annual blood donation camp of the local branch of the Sant Nirankari Charitable Foundation held here today. As many as 514 donors,donated blood at the camp. Dr Rajiv Bhalla, Civil Surgeon, Mohali, said, “ The high level of self-motivation among the donors deserves appreciation because this fulfils the objective of voluntary blood donation ”. — TNS



An irony lost on PU officials?
Newcomers made to promise they will not get involved in ragging
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The Panjab University authorities want the newly admitted students to the varsity and city colleges to “promise” that they will not take part in ragging. The students have to submit an undertaking stating that they will not be involved in ragging while seeking admission to hostels.

These are the same newcomers who are the only ones vulnerable to ragging. The irony seems to be lost on the PU officials.

A first-year student of the University Institute of Engineering and Technology (UIET) said he was surprised on being asked to fill the anti-ragging form at the time of admission to the hostel.

“We are the ones vulnerable to ragging; however, we too are being made to sign an undertaking stating that we will not rag anyone. It seems illogical,” said the student.

Another first-year student of the PEC University of Technology said the focus should be on the senior students who harass the freshers. The undertaking should be taken when students get promoted to the second year,” he said.

Dean Student Welfare Navdeep Goyal said freshers too could be involved 
in ragging.

“There can be the possibility of a first-year student taking admission in July. The student can then harass the students who join the hostel a few months later,” said the DSW.

The DSW said the move aimed at making the students aware about the implications of ragging on the campus.

Warden of the Boys’ Hostel No. VII Yograj Angrish said the first-year students can gang-up with the seniors to rag some individual. In that case, the first-year student would be suspended too, said Angrish.

“The institution will not be able to take any action in the absence of any such undertaking,” he said.



PEC students get tips on cracking group discussions, interviews
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The PEC University of Technology organised its first-ever finishing school on soft skills development for the final-year students to prepare them for the campus recruitment.

During the three-day event that concluded today, around 360 students were divided into six groups. Each group attended two-hour sessions conducted by various experts.

Amit Hans taught the nuances of group discussion. A discussion on communication skills was hosted by Gurmit Singh. Nayna Tulli helped the students in discovering their strengths and weaknesses. Tips on resume writing were given by Neeraj Sharma, while Rohit Kwatra trained the students on common questions asked during interviews.



DPS-Noida declared best delegation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Delhi Public School, Noida, bagged the best delegation award on the concluding day of the Model United Nations conference at Bhavan Vidyalaya School, Sector 27.
The coveted Secretary General’s Award went to Sahil Bhargava, an independent candidate. The other awards included best position paper and special mention given to students in different categories.

Around 246 students from 40 schools were present during the conference. The event provided delegates with an ideal platform to delve deeper into various issues of global concern and get a better understanding of the intricacies involved in the functioning of the UN.

The three-day long conference witnessed various activities beginning with an impressive opening ceremony. This was followed by hectic parleys, negotiations, heated debates and lobbying. Presiding over the closing ceremony, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan chairman RK Saboo commended the delegates on their fiery spirit and their passion to transform the world into a perfect and ideal place to live in.



Students clean hostel premises
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
A cleanliness drive was organised by the residents of Boys’ Hostel No. 1 on and around the hostel premises at Panjab University.
The hostel warden, Dr Jaskaran Singh, with the help of students, office staff, and mess and canteen staff, conducted the drive.

The drive was initiated by Dean Student Welfare Prof Navdeep Goyal. It was attended by wardens of all the boys’ hostels, and a number of students.

The drive aimed at creating awareness about cleanliness among the residents, especially the new comers. The students took a pledge to make the Panjab University campus plastic free.

Date extended for MEd admissions

Panjab University has extended the last date for online submission of applications of MEd (Correspondence) at the University School of Open Learning (USOL) to August 5. The last date for submission of documents has also been extended to August 8. Admission to the 150 seats is available for in-service teachers only.

Free health camp

The National Service Scheme unit of Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, organised a free health-cum-dental check-up camp on the college campus. The theme of the camp was “Healthy Youth Healthy India”. Around 300 students and 40 staff members availed of the the various medical facilities.

Freshers’ party

The department of computer applications of Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, organised Freshers’ Mania to welcome the newcomers. The event was marked by performances on interesting songs, dances and skits. Students sashayed down the ramp in their best attires.



from schools
Environment Week

Chandigarh: Various activities and competitions were organised by Sarvhit Eco-Club of the Sharda Sarvhitkari Model School, Sector 40-D, as part of the Environment Week celebration. Different days including Vanamahotsava, Tree Plantation Day, Green Day and Herbal Day were celebrated by conductive various activities for the students. On Green day, the students came dressed in green clothes. The students of Classes IX and X participated in slogan-writing, poster-making and poem-writing competition on Save Environment. Display boards were decorated with the creations of our versatile artists.

Poetry recitation

A poetry recitation competition was organised on the premises of MDAV School, Sector 22-A. Students recited different forms of poems. All the participants were applauded for their performances.

Rakhi-making activity

With Raksha Bandhan, the festival symbolic of the bond between a brother and a sister, round the corner, a rakhi-making activity was held at Bhavan Vidyalaya Junior, Sector 33. All the students of Classes II-V took part in it. Students made beautiful designs, and some used waste material for the purpose. These were later returned to the students for use during the festival.

Singing competition

Swar Udgam, an inter-school Hindustani classical vocal and geet/ghazal competition was organised by Mount Carmel School, Sector 47-B. The classical vocal competition was conducted for the students of classes VI to VIII, and the latter for classes IX and X. Students from various schools of the tricity participated in the event. Subhash Ghosh, a renowned classical musician, was the chief guest.


St John’s High School, Sector 26, organised an exhibition on value education. The Class VI students prepared exhibits on health issues, and those from Class VII chose culture and heritage. For Class VIII, the theme was nature and its conservation, for Class IX patriotism and for Class X students, it was love for parents. Students exhibited charts and models related to the theme in their respective classrooms.

Visit to garden

Panchkula: Nursery class students of St Soldier's School, Sector 16, visited Yavnika Garden. They were shown trees, flowers, plants and butterflies. The little ones ran behind butterflies trying to catch the beautiful creatures. All the students enjoyed playing in the lush green fields.

Movie screening

The students of Vijay Public School, Sector 17, were taken for a screening of ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, a biopic on Milkha Singh. The movie was both entertaining and inspirational. It motivated students to face challenges in life and came out as a winner.

Freshers’ party

A freshers’ party-cum-talent hunt competition was organised at Satluj Public School, Sector 4, for students of Class XI. Principal Krit Serai welcomed the students and wished them luck for the coming session. Students put up various performances that showcased their talents. Fun games like Bollywood Bonanza, Musical Chairs, Guess the Song and Lost and Found were the other highlights of the show.

Fun activity

Mohali: Ashmah International School organised a fun-filled activity, Show and Tell, for the kindergarten students. Tiny tots gave outstanding performances. Doraemon, Chhota Bheem, Shinchain, Nobita, Suniyo and other cartoon characters entertained the children. The activity aimed at confidence building. — TNS



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