C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


First 24X7 food street on cards
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
The municipal corporation has decided to start the first round-the-clock food street in the city. It will function from the Plaza extension in Sector 17. The food street will come up below an under-construction overbridge, which will connect Anand Theatre with KC Theatre in Sector 17. The municipal corporation has sent a proposal to the UT Administration for the first round-the-clock food street. Mayor Subhash Chawla, who spoke about this project in his Independence Day speech, said once the nod of the Administration was received, the project would be placed before the MC House.

He said the overbridge would be functional within two months following which they would rent out these shops as food outlets.

MC Commissioner Vivek Pratap Singh said there was space for 40 booths on the ground floor. This round-the-clock food street would help the MC in reviving the Sector 17 Plaza and would also help increase the footfall in the northern part (Plaza extension) of the Sector 17 Plaza, he said.

He said according to the proposal, in the morning and afternoon hours, there would be limited seating arrangements outside these shops. However, during night hours, they were planning to allow the shop owners to make good sitting arrangements outside their shops. As there were a number of parking lots in Sector 17, there would be no problem of parking, he said.

A Sector 17 trader said the proposed food street would boost business in the Plaza extension. At present, visitors preferred to visit shops in the main Plaza and hardly visit this side.

Sector 17 facing competition from malls

With a number of malls, especially Elante Mall, having come up in the Industrial Area, the number of people visiting Sector 17 has seen a decline. The UT Administration and the MC are trying their best to revive the charm of Sector 17, the commercial hub of the city.

Proposal sent to Admn

The food street will function from the Plaza extension in Sector 17. The MC has sent a proposal to the UT Administration in this regard. Mayor Subhash Chawla, who spoke about this project in his Independence Day speech, said once the nod of the Administration was received, the project would be placed before the MC House.



Woman gets 44 stitches as dead tree falls on her
Tribune News Service

Residents shift a tree that fell on a woman in Sector 22-D, Chandigarh.
Residents shift a tree that fell on a woman in Sector 22-D, Chandigarh.

The victim, Amarjit Kaur, recuperates at her residence in Sector 22, Chandigarh. Tribune photos: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, August 16
A 45-year-old woman received serious injuries after a dead tree fell on her head yesterday. The victim, Amarjeet Kaur (45), a resident of Sector 22-D, received 16 stitches on her right hand and 28 stitches on her head.

Amarjeet's son Varinder Singh said his mother was standing on a road on the front side of their house when a dead tree fell on her during a thunderstorm. She was taken to the GMSH, Sector 16, where she received 44 stitches on her head and hand.

He alleged that residents of the area had approached MC officials several times to cut this dead tree, but to no avail.

MC Chief Engineer SS Bida said a proposal for axing dead trees in Sector 22-D was under consideration.

Last year, the corporation, in consultation with the UT Forest Department, had sent a report to the UT Administration, recommending that 200 dead and 128 dangerous trees should be axed immediately as a majority of these were in residential areas and posed a threat to the lives and property of people.



No major project for city
Patil focuses on parking; UT highlights old achievements
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Once again, UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil did not announce any major project for the city in his Independence Day speech. In his 35-minute speech in Hindi, Patil mainly spoke about solar energy, the Metro project and the draft master plan of Chandigarh. He also raised the issue regarding the parking problem in the city in his 15-page speech.

To ensure that Patil did not face embarrassment by repeating old achievements of his predecessors, the UT Administration did not include the list of achievements in Patil’s speech. The list of achievements, in the form of a booklet, was distributed among those present at the function.

While releasing the list of achievements, UT officials included some old projects claiming that these were executed during the January 27-August 14 period.

Sample this: In the list of achievements, the Administration has mentioned that the construction of the General Housing Scheme in Sector 63 is in full swing. However, the reality is that the project is already running behind schedule. The construction of 388 flats in one of the blocks is yet to start. Though the construction of one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom flats is under way, the work pertaining to the laying of pipelines and power cables has been delayed. Similarly, it was also mentioned that the night bus service had been started from the ISBT, Sector 43, to IT Park and from the PGI to IT Park. However, the same fact was mentioned in the list of achievements during the Independence Day function last year, which read, “The night bus service from the ISBT, Sector 43, to IT Park and from the PGI to IT Park has been started”.

In the achievements, it was mentioned that the Prison Management System had been set up. The same fact was mentioned in in the list of achievements last year, which read, “The Prison Management System for maintaining the data of prisoners was launched recently”.

Patil's take on parking problem

Patil once again expressed concern over the parking problem in the city. He said, “Residents should park their vehicles inside their houses. The traffic problem can be solved if people living in large houses park their vehicles on their premises or garage. The Administration feels that those who want to construct a garage in their house should be allowed to do so in the basement of the house." SDM conspicuous by her absence

Following the SDM-DC controversy, while DC Mohammad Shayin and his PA Poonam Malik were present at the Independence Day function, SDM Amandeep Kaur, was conspicuous by her absence. She is on leave.



Nothing much in Mayor's speech too
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
City Mayor Subhash Chawla spoke about ongoing and pending projects in his Independence Day speech. He did not announce any major project for city residents. Chawla said to solve the problem of low water pressure, six water boosting stations with dedicated tubewells had been constructed and made operational in Sectors 29-C, 31-D, 39-B, 46-C, 47-A and 48-A, Chandigarh, at a cost of Rs 3.25 crore. Construction work on some of these stations was initiated during former Mayor Raj Bala Malik's tenure.

The Mayor said work on a sewerage treatment plant of 50 MLD capacity at 3 BRD Complex, Chandigarh, had been completed at a cost of Rs 35 crore. However, the process of testing and stabilisation of the plant was on and would take a few more months before it could be made operational. The Mayor said there was a proposal for installing LED streetlights in various sectors and in Dhanas, Maloya and Mani Majra. The Mayor said for proper sanitation, 25 dumper vehicles and 200 garbage bins had been replaced in the city.



‘Azad brought revolution’
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Born as Desh Prem Aggarwal, he rather chose “Azad” behind his name as a mark of respect for his father, who was a freedom fighter and ridiculed the use of caste before any name. These coded values in him were the core of his abilities, which helped producing scores of cricket talent not only for teams of Punjab and Haryana but also for nation too.

His contemporary and friend Sushil Kapoor, a PCA offical, said he brought revolution to the Indian cricket by producing several legendary cricketers and the credit definitely goes to his values, he inherited from his father and his Australian coach, O Brain, under whom he underwent a formal training in early 1950’s. He said that for him discipline was paramount. He did not allow anyone, including Kapil Dev, to come late or without proper cricket kit.

“This strictness of his played a vital role in grooming cricketers who later on changed the cricket scene in India,” he said.

One of his other contemporaries, Ashok Khanna, a senior selector for the Punjab Ranji team, said that he was a fine gentleman and very good sportsman.

As a coach, he attained what nobody could. During his stint in early 70’s, he produced likes of Kapil Dev, Chetan Sharma, Yograj and several others for state teams, which no other Daronacharya coach could so that so far.

DP Azad came as a cricket coach in Chandigarh in 1964 and many said it was a time when the cricket in the city was not popular at all. He made the boys practiced hard and pushed their selection for the Haryana team which was developing at that time.

Kapil Dev, Yograj, Chetan Sharma and Ashok Malthotra all played for the country through Haryana and DP Azad had a big contribution it.

His contemporary, Chaman Lal Malothra, said he was a fine coach who continued to produce good blowers and batsman for India.

Many feel that before 1970’s, this region existed nowhere in terms of producing blowers and batsman for the national side. But from Kapil Dev onwards, this region started getting recognition and DP Azad had an important role in it.

He headed a fast bowlers’ academy at Cricket Stadium, Sector 16, from 1990 to 1998, which was joint venture between the BCCI and Sports Authority of India.

Till his last breath, he held the post of Director, Non-Residential Cricket Academies at the Punjab Cricket Association in Mohali.

Cremation: DP Azad will be cremated tomorrow at 11 pm in the Sector 25, cremation ground.



A close friend has gone; I owe him a lot: Kapil
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
"One day, I was late by 20 minutes for a cricket practice session and legendary coach DP Azad did not allow me to play for the next three days. That was his dedication for cricket,” said cricket legend Kapil Dev while recalling his long association with Azad.

Speaking to Chandigarh Tribune on the phone from Mumbai, he said Azad had a rare ability to spot and hone talent. He was a tough coach and used to put in a lot of effort to hone the cricketing skills of budding players.

“I have lost a very close friend today. I owe him a lot. Whatever I have achieved in my life as a cricketer is all due to him,” he said, while recounting Azad’s contribution to his successful career.

Despite being tough, he was a lovely person and had a positive approach towards life. He soon turned a dear friend. We used to discuss a lot of topics, including cricket and personal life.

“I always used to address him as a young man since he always remained full of life. A month ago, I called him up and we shared light moments. His death is a personal loss for me, he said. Offering condolences to Azad's family members, Kapil said the legendary coach would always remain close to his heart.

A disciplined coach, says Chetan Sharma

Besides Kapil Dev, DP Azad groomed several Indian cricket stars, including Chetan Sharma, Yograj Singh and Ashok Malhotra. Recalling his association with Azad, former Indian cricketer Chetan Sharma said he was a disciplined coach. “I came to him for coaching at the age of seven. He was the one who taught me everything about cricket. Whatever I am today is only because of my beloved coach," he said. Describing his death as a personal loss, Chetan Sharma said in his death, the cricketing world had lost a dedicated coach.



A big loss for the cricketing world, says Azad’s friend
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
With the demise of country’s first cricket Dronacharya, Desh Prem Azad, the City Beautiful has lost its one of the most illustrious sons today. Popularly known as “Azad Sir” among the internationally acclaimed cricket stars and “Desh” among his contemporaries, this over zealous coach, who had produced as many as five international cricket stars, had been associated with cricket till his last breath.

Though he had not been feeling well for the past few months, the septuagenarian Dronacharya did not miss any chance to watch national and international ties in Chandigarh and Punjab Cricket Stadium at Mohali.

On his health enquiry in a random meeting with this correspondent at the PCA Stadium, Mohali, during the recent IPL matches, he admitted that he was not well. When asked: “Sir, why don’t you take rest?, He replied: “Watching cricket match and roaming among cricketers is my medicine, son. “Hun marr ke hi aaram karanga” (Now I would take rest only after death).”

Even at the age of 72 to 73, Azad opened a cricket academy for budding students at St Stephen’s School, Sector 45, about five years ago, where he used to spend his mornings and evenings in moulding the budding cricketers.

“He was very strict when it came to cricket. He did not tolerate any nonsense or indiscipline on the field. For us (the cricketers), he was 7-in-1 as he was our massager, doctor, coach, manager, mentor, friend and guide. For us, he was a father-figure,” said Rakesh Jolly, a former Hayrana North Zone player, who was trainee of Azad with Kapil Dev and Yograj Singh.

Azad’s close pal Captain Sushil Kapoor, who is presently a spokesperson of the PCA, claimed that Azad was the man behind bringing the Chandigarh’s name on international map in cricketing scenario. “He changed the cricketing scenario of the city by producing star players like Kapil Dev, Chetan Sharma and Harbhajan Singh. Virtually, he ate cricket, drank cricket and lived cricket,” said Kapoor while remembering his old friend. His death is not only loss to Chandigarh but to world’s cricket,” said Kapoor.



Blood camps, functions mark I-Day celebrations at city offices
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Quadrant Televentures Ltd, the company behind "Connect Broadband" and "Videocon Mobile Services" in Punjab, has been organising voluntary blood donation camps since 2010 at their Head Office in Mohali to mark Independence Day yesterday.. These camps are held in collaboration with the PGI Blood Bank Society.

Plant more trees: MP

Pawan Kumar Bansal, local MP, has appealed to the city residents to plant more trees for a brighter future. He said people must care for their environment and their children needed to be inculcated the habit so that they cared for nature. He was speaking soon after a tree plantation programme in Burail to mark Independence Day. The function was organised by Dera Sacha Sauda.


The scientists and staff of Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory celebrated held a function at its range in Ramgarh near here. Dr Manjit Singh, Director, TBRL, hoisted the Tricolour and paid homage to the freedom fighters.

He addressed the staff of the TBRL as well as the staff and students of the Ballistics School, Ramgarh.

Principal Controller of Defence Accounts

The officers and staff of the Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Western Command), Sector-9, also celebrated the occasion. Upendra Sah, Principal Controller of Defence Accounts, hoisted the national flag and thereafter various cultural items were presented by the staff.


Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, celebrated Independence Day on its premises. Prof Atul Sachdev, Director Principal, unfurled the National Flag. Patriotic songs were sung by the first batch of the MBBS students and nursing staff.

Professor Sachdev emphasised to work hard for bringing up the name, fame, unity, integrity of the GMCH and to take pledge to perform duties diligently with honesty and integrity.

UCO Bank

UCO bank held a function at its Circle Office, Sector 17, here. Dr SK Nandi, General Manager and circle head of the bank, unfurled the National Flag in the presence of the executives and employees of the bank.

230 units of blood donated

As many as 230 units of blood were donated during the 30th blood donation camp organised by the Canara Bank Officers’ Association, Chandigarh Region, here on the occasion of Independence Day in association with the Department of Transfusion Medicine, PGIMER, Chandigarh.

Among the star donors were Pragraj Sharma (209th time), Gulab Singh (79th time), Mastram Joshi (109th time) and Parminder Singh (50th time).

The Lions Club, Chandigarh Supreme, also participated in the blood donation camp.



Patriotic flavour at tricity schools
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh/Panchkula/Mohali, August 16
Independence Day was celebrated with patriotic fervour in Tribune Model School. Princial Vandana Saxena hoisted the National Flag followed by the National Anthem, which was attended by the students, staff and parents of the schoolchildren. The cultural programme began with a prayer sung by the students followed by a song by the students of Class IX and X. The school choir, including students of classes VI, VII and VIII, sung patriotic songs.

(Right) Governor Shivraj V Patil waves at the public; and girls in a jubilant mood. Tribune photos: manoj mahajan

Sacred Heart, Sector 26

Clockwise from top: NCC cadets participate in the Independence parade at Sector 17 in Chandigarh on Thursday

The day's events started with a flag-hoisting ceremony carried out by the manager of the school, Sr Maria. The students of class IX gave an awe-inspiring performance through the enactment of various historical events starting from Champaran to Quit India Movement that had finally led to India being independent. The principal, Sr Nisha, applauded the efforts of the students and the teachers.

GMSSS, Sector 46-D

Founder president of NGO "Support A Child" JS Diwan graced the Independence Day function as chief guest at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector, 46-D, Chandigarh. Songs and speeches emphasising the sacrifice and struggle of the freedom fighters were presented by the school students.

Government Model High School, Sec 26

Independence Day was celebrated with great pomp and shows in the school premises. As many as 300 persons including students and teachers were present. The Tricolour was unfurled by the head master of the school, Shekher Chander. Colourful programmes, including dances and skits, were performed by the tiny tots.

Govt School, Dadu Majra

Councillor Sat Parkash Aggarwal unfurled the Tricolour during the function at Govt High School, Dadu Majra. Head Mistress Lovleen Kaur addressed the students. The students presented a colourful cultural programme.

Stepping Stones Sr. Sec. School, Sec 37

Anu Kumar, Principal, St Stepping Stones Sr. Sec. School, Sector 37, unfurled the National Flag at a function on the school premises. The customary march past had students from NCC joining the four Houses of the school. The director academics, Sunil Kumar, addressed the students.


The students of GMHS-36D celebrated Independence Day with patriotic fervour. Former Headmaster PC Choudary hoisted the National Flag followed by a cultural bonanza by the students. Headmaster Rakesh Sood motivated the students to follow in the footsteps of the great freedom fighters and leaders.

Govt Model High School, Sector 34

Independence day was celebrated in Govt Model High School, Sector 34, with fervor. Dr Vinod Sharma, head of the Institution, hoisted the national flag and gave a speech laying emphasis on the importance of Independence Day. The students presented a brief cultural programme.

Govt. Sr. Sec School, Maloya

The celebration at Govt. Sr Sec School, Maloya, Chandigarh saw students presenting several cultural shows. Vice-Principal Gurcharan Singh unfurled the national flag and exhorted the students to be ready to shoulder the responsibility of the nation for fulfilling the dreams of the freedom fighters and martyrs. A colorful cultural programme was presented.

Sharda Sarvhitkari Model Sr. Sec School, Sec 40 D

The weeklong celebrations of the Sharda Sarvhitkari Model Sr. Sec School, Sec-40 D, culminated with the hoisting of the National Flag. After the National Anthem an immaculate march past by the students impressed the audience which comprised various dignitaries from the school management.

St. Joseph's Sr. Sec. School, Sec 44

The colours of patriotism came alive at St. Joseph's Sr. Sec. School, Sec 44 D, Chandigarh, when the premises of the school reverberated with the rendition of patriotic songs and the students swayed to the beautiful numbers evoking the memories of the freedom struggle, expressing their love for the nation. The show commenced with the hoisting of the Tricolour.

DAV Public School, Sector-8C, Chandigarh

The celebrations at DAV Public School, Sector-8C, began with flag hoisting by the school Principal, Jaskiran Harika. Students presented patriotic songs, role-play on freedom fighters and recited poems in different languages to express their love for their nation. The students participated with great zeal and enthusiasm in all the activities such as painting face masks, making head bands, making flowers using orange, white and green buttons symbolizing tricolor.

St John’s High School

The students of St John's High School reverberated with patriotic zeal and fervour. The staff and students gathered together to pay homage to the martyrs and remember their immense sacrifice in getting India her freedom. The principal, Kavita Das, said it was a privilege for them to be able to share this day with the children from Khelshala.

Hansraj Public School

Panchkula: The Independence Day function started with the hoisting of the National Flag. The 10-day celebrations marking Independence Day also come to an end. The students of classes VI-VIII presented songs, dances and dramas and brought alive the patriotic flavours. Principal Jaya Bhardwaj encouraged the students to contribute in the building of a progressive nation.

Sky School, Panchkula

The students of Sky School remembered the supreme sacrifice of our freedom fighters on the occasion of Independence Day. The students of the school presented a colourful cultural programme comprising patriotic songs and dances. The Principal Santosh Bhandari performed the flag-hoisting ceremony.

St Teresa Convent School, Sec 25

The function commenced with an impressive march past by the four houses and the hoisting of the Tricolour on the school premises, followed by the National Anthem. The school choir sang ever-inspiring patriotic songs to mark the beginning of the cultural programme.



Songs, dance mark college celebrations
Tribune News Service

Schoolchildren present an item in Sector 17, Chandigarh.

Chandigarh, August 16
Independence Day was celebrated at Panjab University with great enthusiasm and patriotic fervour. PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Arun Kumar Grover unfurled the National Flag at the Parade Ground of the university. Patriotic songs and dance performances were part of the celebrations at the university. Students of the Music Department, PU, Ankur School, PU, and Guru Gobind Singh Vidya Mandir School, Ratwara Sahib, presented a cultural programme.

Dev Samaj College of Education

Dev Samaj College of Education celebrated Independence Day with great zeal and fervour. Students presented their views, poems, group songs and group dances to mark the occasion. College magazine “Div Dipti” was also released on the occasion. Dr Jyoti Khanna, principal, appreciated the efforts of teachers and students to organise the function.

Government College of Education, Sec 20

As per the tradition of the college, the oldest serving employee in order, Gopal Hira, gardener, unfurled the National Flag. Patriotic songs were presented by the students. Sweets were distributed among all present on the occasion.

PEC varsity of technology

Independence Day was celebrated with great enthusiasm at the PEC University of Technology. The event commenced with the flag hosting by the director, followed by a welcome speech highlighting the significance of the day. PEC director Manoj Arora highlighted the achievements of students, faculty and staff of the PEC University of Technology.


Staff and students of Post Graduate Government College for Girls (PGGCG), Sector 11, celebrated Independence Day with gaiety and fervour. Students of the Department of Music Vocal sang patriotic songs.

Home Science College

A flag-hoisting ceremony was held at Government Home Science College. Students of the college presented group songs. Tiny tots of Chaitanya Laboratory Nursery School of the college also sang patriotic songs.


Independence Day was celebrated with great fervour by the staff and students of Post Graduate Government College for Girls (PGGCG), Sector 42. Apart from the cultural programme, the NSS unit of the college also organised a tree plantation drive. The students took a pledge to keep the city clean and green.



At Mohali, function stopped midway
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal takes the salute.

Mohali, August 16
Heavy downpour played spoilsport during Independence Day function, which had to be suspended midway following the Chief guest, Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal left it just within half-an-hour after reaching the venue.

Badal, who was reportedly down with fever on Thursday, hoisted the Tricolour, made a brief speech and inspected the parade for few minutes and left the function, held at Government College at Phase 6, here yesterday.

All the schoolchildren, who were scheduled to present special their programme and were braving heavy rain in wait for their turn, were seen disappointed when the function was cancelled midway.

“Our preparations and hard work has come to a naught”, said the children while returning to their homes. The function had started at around 9 am and came to an end at about 9.30 am.

Earlier, all the senior officials, including the Deputy Chief Minister, were seen watching the function under their umbrellas. Even several spectators were seen rushing around, looking for shelter.

The commendation certificates to the 19 awardees, 11 tricycles and 25 sewing machines to needy ones were handed over later.

In his brief speech of around 10 minutes, Badal touched upon certain points, including Punjab becoming the first power surplus state of the country by December, the state government’s resolve to maintain peace and security, development of civic amenities including road infrastructure, constant water supply, sewerage and LED streetlights.

Prominent amongst others who were present on the occasion were former union minister Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, Kiranbir Singh Kang, ADGP ( Security) Dinkar Gupta, Mohali Deputy Commissioner Tejinderpal Singh Sidhu and SSP Gurpreet Singh Bhullar.



Dog plays spoilsport at Panchkula function
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Schoolchildren present a patriotic item in Panchkula; and (below) a stray dog roams around close to the dais at the function. tribune photos: parvesh chauhan

Panchkula, August 16
The Panchkula Administration was in a shock for a while when an unwanted guest turned up at near the dais during the Independence Day celebrations at the Parade Ground, Sector 5, yesterday. Causing embarrassment to the officials, a stray dog appeared all of a sudden, first when the chief guest was on with his speech and then before the beginning of the parade.

The district administration held its function at the parade ground where Haryana Revenue Minister Mahender Pratap Singh was the chief guest. The entire venue was put under tight security.

Deputy Commissioner Dr SS Phulia, Commissioner of Police (CP) Rajbir Deswal and several other senior officials were present.

Silence prevailed when Pratap was delivering his speech. As soon as the dog appeared at the scene, the air was filled with the children's giggles.

It was after the senior officials present on the dais told the lower officials to shoo the dog away that the latter was driven out. The officials heaved a sigh of relief after the dog was driven out but they blushed when it again appeared before the beginning of the parade.

Sandeep Kumar Malik, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), who was to lead the parade, was also in a fix to see the ‘guest’ just in front of him. Once again, the dog was driven out of the venue.

SDM fails to turn up

SDM Kalka Manita Malik did not turn up to take her award. A Chandigarh Tribune report had highlighted how the administration was patting its own back. It was highlighted in news that the administration had decided to award Malik for her ‘good supervision’ during the Ghaggar tragedy, even though it was her duty to do that.

Principals awarded

Sandeep Sardana, Principal of Manav Mangal School, Sector 11, and Shashi Banerjee, Principal of Bhavan Vidyalaya, Sector 15, were awarded during the function by the district administration for their contribution in the field of education. 



Panchkula police on its toes
Advises residents not to believe in rumours about mystery gang
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 16
Panic gripped Panchkula when the residents claimed that they had spotted members of the "Kala Kacha" gang. The police control room is flooded with phone calls daily, keeping the police on its toes. Though the Panchkula police claims that the gang has not struck anywhere till now, it is helping in organising "theekri pehras’ in the area.

Davinder Mahajan, president of the Residents’ Welfare Association, MDC, Sector 4, said "theekri pehras" were being organised in Mahadevpur and Saketri villages. “As our sector is surrounded by forests, there is a danger. Children in our area have stopped going outside in the evening. The police should give some assurance.”

Shikha, a call centre employee and resident of Sector 9, said, “I return home late in the night and still can't sleep because I have been told that the gang observes our movement before entering our house.”

Chander Mohan Wasan, a resident of Sector 20, said security guards in their society had started going home early in the evening. “Our security guard has asked to leave early at 7 pm before it gets dark. We even thought of hiring two more security guards as some of the residents say that they have spotted the gang members,” Wasan said.

Similarly, in sector 19, a woman said she had seen three gang members dressed in a tribal way and when she called the police, they fled from the spot.

Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police, Rajbir Deswal, said all the adjoining areas of Panchkula and the peripheral corridor have "theekri Pehras" all through the night coupled with police vehicles patrolling the area between 10 pm to 4 am. He said there was not even a single case reported where the gang struck.

He has asked the public not believe the rumours and to remain alert. "People should not leave any sign of an easy entry into their homes. These criminal gangs strike between 1 am to 3 am. They don’t strike before 11 pm in any case. The threat may be genuine but we are alert and also expect the public to remain alert. An ACP rank officer besides SHOs and police post in charges are patrolling the areas.



PGI to introduce lung, pancreas, intestine transplant
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
On the occasion of Independence Day, Prof YK Chawla, Director, PGIMER, announced that the PGI had successfully conducted a heart transplant, thus achieving a milestone in the history of the Institute. "The institute is making efforts to introduce lungs, pancreas and intestine transplant under the Multi Organ Transplantation Programme," he said.

"To check the increasing load of patients on the institute, the PGIMER had been negotiating with the Chandigarh Administration to provide it space for a Screening OPD and Centres for Advanced Neurology, Physical Medicine, Cancer and Geriatrics," said Professor Chawla. He also talked about the recent state-of-the-art infrastructure added to the Department of Radiodiagnosis. Ten new machines for various kinds of diagnosis, including MRI, ultlrasound, CT Scan, Dexa Scan and digital X-ray, had been installed.

About the research-related achievements of the institute, Professor Chawla announced that November 9, 2013, would be celebrated as 2nd Research Day at the institute. He said in the last six months, about Rs 7 crore had been sanctioned for various research projects undertaken by the PGI faculty. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had approved substantial grants for the junior faculty members, who wanted to undertake research. Special funds had been allocated for the research-related activities for MD/MS and DM/MCh students.

He said in the last six months, 23 professors had been given higher administrative grade under the Assessment Promotion Scheme, 43 employees of different sections had been recruited, 34 promoted, 205 confirmed, 34 had got financial upgrade under the ACP scheme and 93 under the MACP scheme.

A tree plantation drive was inaugurated by Professor Chawla along with Prof Amod Gupta (Dean PGI), Prof Anil Gupta (MS, PGI) and other senior faculty members at the OPD complex. Nearly 500 plants were planted during this drive. Dr Babita Ghai, Additional Professor, Department of Anaesthesia, organised the tree plantation programme.

Earlier Professor Chawla unfurled the national flag at the PGIMER and celebrated Independence Day along with the faculty, nursing, administrative and other staff. All the senior officers of the institute attended the Independence Day function. Patriotic songs were sung by the nursing staff and sweets were distributed among the employees by the Director.



Power snag hits Elante, shoppers suffer
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Shoppers at the city’s largest mall, Elante, had a tough time on Friday as a power snag hit the mall leading to blackouts in some parts of it. While in absence of power supply some of the stores remained completely closed for a major part of the day , there were frequent blackouts (every 10 minutes) at other stores, leaving shoppers as well as staff harassed.

The power supply remained interrupted in first half of the day. Air-conditioners and exhaust fans were not working properly. The power supply could only be restored after 3 pm. Meanwhile, the cinemas and food courts were not hit by the snag.

While the lobbies remained lit up, the major problem was witnessed inside the stores. “I was inside a trial room when the power went off. I had selected a few clothes but could not see anything for about 10 minutes. Later, one of workers arranged a torch for me. I then waited for a few minutes and paid the bill ,” said Amita, a shopper.

“In such places if air-conditioner stops working, one may face suffocation. I felt uneasy in the dark,” said Mehak Singh, another shopper. While the lifts at the mall remained operational, the escalators did not work for the first half of the day. Even the parking lot was diverted towards the office parking area for about two hours in the morning.

The mall is spending about Rs 3 lakh per day on the purchase of diesel to run power generator sets round the clock. The UT Administration is yet to provide power supply to the mall. The officials of the mall had requested the UT Electricity Department to provide 15 MW power to the mall during its launch.



Despite all odds, he wants to be a breadwinner for his family
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Even as he yearned to live, study and go ahead in the life like others of his age, he could not get a glimpse of school education till he turned 18. But, his inability to walk could not prove to be a deterrent for him. As 25-year-old Ganesh Sharma managed to reach the UT Administration and he was identified as a special case and received tutorials at home. Finding him bright enough, the teachers promoted him to Class X in 2011 and he managed to complete his Class XII this year with 71 per cent marks from the Open School Board.

However, amid the struggle to survive with his ulcer, he wants to go for home-based computer training. "I wish to learn computer as it is required for all kind of jobs today. My father has borne the expenses of my treatment. Now, I want to be the breadwinner for my family," Ganesh said.

After losing his mother three years ago, he found himself totally dependant on his father. With completely motionless lower limbs, he is forced to crawl inside his home for his needs.

"My father is 70-year-old. I sometimes feel that I trouble him a lot by asking for every small thing. So I try and crawl upto to kitchen whenever I need water," he said.

But in doing so, Ganesh has developed infection on his knees. He is now undergoing treatment for that at the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32.

He has been identified by the National Commission for Disabled Persons as a completely disabled person yet capable of studying at home.



Sub-inspector sent to Police Lines
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Acting on the complaint of a BJP councillor who had complained against a Sub-Inspector (SI) for illegal detention of a Sector 30 resident, the Inspector General of Police (IG) transferred the SI to the Police Lines and marked an inquiry to SSP (operations) RS Ghuman.

Satinder Singh, councillor, ward no. 18, had filed a complaint against Sub-Inspector Davinder Pal Singh. He had alleged that the SI illegally detained Mohit Sharma in a case registered on August 10 at the Industrial Area police station.

According to the police, Sharma, 23, was involved in a brawl at a wine shop on the night of August 10 and was arrested the next morning.

Satinder alleged that when the BJP members visited the police station, Davinder Singh who was the investigating officer for the case, said Sharma would be produced before the court on August 12 for bail.

"Later, the bail was granted by the investigation officer in the night after taking money. The investigating officer deliberately and intentionally kept the accused in the custody for more than 12 hours and mislead everyone by saying that he would get the bail in the court," Satinder alleged.



12th Five-Year Plan
Need to improve quality of students joining higher education: Secy
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
“The quality of youths entering into the higher education is not worth, for which focus on raising the standard of students is one of the prime concerns in the 12th Five-Year Plan,” said Ashok Thakur, Secretary, Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource and Development (MHRD), while addressing the faculty and students at Panjab University on the topic “Issues in Higher Education and Reform Agenda”.

Thakur said in 2008, the gross enrolment ratio of youths joining the higher education was less than 12 per cent. However, according to a survey done in 2012, the ratio has gone up to 20 per cent, which has been possible due to the investment of around Rs 84,000 crore in the 11th Five-Year Plan for the higher education and opening of around 60 central universities, nine new IITs and seven new IIMs.

“We have focused on the building of infrastructure in the 11th Five-Year Plan. In the 12th Five-Year Plan, the focus will be on the quality of youths enrolling for the higher education,” he said.

Thakur said a lot needed to be done to increase the quality of students for which government school education needed to be improved.

“State governments should give autonomy to schools so that they can function without independently and the quality of students entering higher education can be increased,” he said.

Thakur said state governments also needed to invest in the filed of higher education in their respective states as over 96 per cent of the total students in higher education institutes, which was about 20 million, belonged to the state universities or colleges.

“Our major funding goes to central universities. Under the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), we are trying to provide funds to the state universities and colleges also,” he said.

Speaking about the teaching system, Thakur said the way of teaching also needed to be reformed to compete with private universities and colleges coming up in the country.

“We need to change the old method of class lectures into classroom discussions,” Thakur said.

He suggested that inbreeding was one of the slow poisons, which was affecting the standard of teachers in universities.

“Students who pursue PhD from a particular university get jobs there only. There should be a policy that any student who passes out from a university can join the university as a teacher after a few years of experience,” he said.

The Secretary, Higher Education, also asked the university for fair selection of teachers and to promote research.



PU notes
Counselling schedules

Panjab University has said that the University Institute of Hotel Management and Tourism (UIHMT), PU, will conduct the last and final counselling on August 19 at 10 AM in UIHMT (Near ICSSR Centre), PU, for filling vacant seats in the general categories. All eligible candidates have been informed to remain present on the counselling date and time along with the required document and fee as announced in the prospectus.

MA (Public Admn)

Panjab University will hold the third counselling for admission to first semester of MA (Public Administration) at the Department of Public Administration on August 20 at 10.30 AM in the Seminar Room of the department. The candidates falling in the general category with waiting list from 26 to 100 are invited to attend the counselling. The candidates have been asked to bring all original certificates/documents at the time of interview.

MBA programmes

The third counselling for filling vacant seats in the general and additional categories for admission to various MBA (Sectoral) programmes at the University Institute of Applied Management and Sciences (UIAMS), will be held on August 21. The counselling will be held at the UIAMS Department. — TNS



Student poll
Police tightens security on PU campus
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Though the final date for PU elections is yet to be announced, the Chandigarh police has set up its base on the university campus, with cops deployed at various parts of the university. The police has also erected tents for the staff at various locations.

In a bid to ensure peace on the campus, police force has been deployed at various parts of the campus.

“Special deployment of policemen have been made at sensitive points, including the Law Department, Student Centre, near PU Ground and the UIET Department in Sector 25 campus of the PU,” said a police official.

Sources said night checks near boys’ hostels were also been carried out to monitor the activities of student parties.

“There are some student parties who have been active in night hours. We want to ensure that there is no violence, following which special vigil is being kept on the activities of leaders,” said police sources.



Imposition of fine
PUSU members protest outside Vice-Chancellor’s office
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 16
Members of the Panjab University Students Union (PUSU) today staged a protest outside the Vice-Chancellor’s office against the imposition of fine on students for late admission to the BDS Department due to the delay in the declaration of results.

Briefing about the issue, PUSU campus president Jagdeep Singh Mann said the students who had compartment applied for compartment as well as reevaluation.

“The students paid Rs 6,800 as compartment fee. However, many of them cleared the exam through reevaluation, the results of which were declared by the university after the admission process without late fee was over,” he said.

The university while refunding the compartment fee deducted Rs 2,000 from the amount claiming that it was late admission fee.

“The students had applied for the reevaluation on time and the university was supposed to declare the results on time,” said PUSU leader Sumit Goklaney.

The students also submitted a memorandum to the university authorities.



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