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Mumps outbreak at Mohali village
23 children of a Chajju Majra school suffering from disease; school closed for a week
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 7
With 23 of the 49 children at Government Elementary School, Chajju Majra vilage in Mohali contracting mumps, a contagious disease, the authorities today ordered to close the school for at least a week. Some other children in the village are also suffering from the disease, say villagers.

Mohali Civil Surgeon Dr Rajiv Bhalla confirmed that several cases of mumps were being reported from the village for past three weeks.

“Teams of the health department are visiting the village regularly and the affected children are being administered medicines free of cost,” said the Civil Surgeon.

As the doctors term the disease contagious, the District Education Officer (Elementary) ordered to close the school for at least a week.

During a visit at the village, The Tribune team was told that the symptoms of the disease were noticed among children in the last week of August.

Mohali Deputy Commissioner Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu said he had ordered the Health Department authorities to hold medical camps in the village. “Teams of the health department have also collected blood samples of children,” said Sidhu.

Issuing an advisory to the residents, Civil Surgeon Dr Bhalla said they should not take it lightly and consult a doctor even in case of cough and fever.

About the disease

Mumps is an extremely contagious viral infection that usually affects children. The condition has a number of symptoms, the most common being the swelling of one or both of the salivary glands on the sides of the face.


A physical examination confirms the presence of the swollen glands. Usually, the disease is diagnosed on clinical grounds. If there is uncertainty about the diagnosis, a test of saliva or blood may be carried out.


A person suffers mumps when infected with the mumps virus. It can be transmitted through saliva from a person already affected with the condition. When contracting mumps, the virus travels from the respiratory tract to the salivary glands and reproduces, causing the glands to swell.

It can spread by sneezing or coughing, using the same cutlery with someone infected, sharing food and drink with someone infected and touching the nose or mouth of an infected person.


The symptoms of mumps usually develop 14 to 25 days after a person is infected with the virus. The average incubation period is around 17 days. Swelling of the parotid glands is the most common symptom of mumps. The parotid glands are a pair of glands responsible for producing saliva. They are located on either side of your face, just below your ears. Both glands are usually affected by the swelling, although only one gland can be affected. The swelling can cause pain, tenderness and difficulty with swallowing.

Pain in the sides of the face where it is swollen:

  • Pain experienced when swallowing
  • Feeling tired and weak
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dryness in mouth
  • Pain in joints
  • Reduced appetite


The mumps vaccine is usually given as a combined measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) inoculation, which contains the safest and most effective form of each vaccine. Two doses of the MMR vaccine are recommended before a child enters school.



2 arrested with 20.5 kg of opium
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 7
The crime branch of the Mohali police arrested two drug peddlers, both residents of Rajasthan, with 20.5 kg of opium worth Rs 20 lakh.

The accused have been identified as 35-year-old Madan Lal Jatian of Kesar Kheri village in Chittorgarh and 36-year-old Raj Mal Achariya of Bada Rajpur village in Udaipur. The police has also impounded the mini-truck (RJ 27 GC 4010) they were travelling in). The police team was led by inspector Gurcharan Singh.

“The accused had concealed the contraband under the packets of electronic parts in the mini-truck, said Mohali SSP Gurpreet Singh Bhullar.

During interrogation, it came to light that an inter-state gang was involved in the smuggling drugs from Rajasthan, said the SSP.

The accused were remanded in five-day police custody by a local court.

“The kingpin of the gang is one Beni Ram, who runs a hotel at Basoda village in Chittorgarh. A non-bailable arrest warrant has been issued against Beni Ram and a police team has been sent to Rajasthan to nab him,” said the SSP.

CIA in charge inspector Gurcharan Singh said: “We are hopeful of arresting more accused.”

The SSP said a special anti-drugs drive was on in the district. “We are also raiding medical stores in the district,” said Bhullar.



40-yr-old held for raping minor
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 7
The Panchkula police today registered a case against a 40-year-old person, Neeraj Kumar, a resident of Bir Ghaggar village, for allegedly raping a minor of the same village. Neeraj, along with his two relatives, including a woman, has been arrested by the police.

The 13-year-old girl was allegedly abducted by Neeraj while she was returning from school. An FIR was registered on September 3 at the Chandimandir police station.

The girl was traced by her relatives to Sector 39 on Friday. They also thrashed the accused, Neeraj Kumar, and later handed him over to the police.

Panchkula Police Commissioner Rajbir Deswal said after recording the statements of the victim under Section 164 of the CrPC, the police registered a rape case against Neeraj at the Chandimandir police station.

The medical examination of the girl has confirmed rape.

In her statement to the police, the girl alleged that she was taken to a dera in Himachal Pardesh where she was molested and raped.



Power shocker through post
Residents receive electricity bills after due date, made to pay penalty
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
Prem Singh, a resident of Sector 38 (West), has been suffering for the past four months through no fault of his own. He has been penalised for depositing the electricity bill after the due date. This is not the first time that Prem Singh has received the bill late, earlier too he was made to pay a fine to the electricity department.

There are several other residents who said they had received the bill by post on September 6 (the last date for depositing the money). Some residents deposited bills on the basis of the last month's receipt to avoid paying the penalty.

Another resident Manjeet Singh said he had to rush to the e-sampark centre last evening to deposit the bill.

Residents of Sector 56 alleged that many a time the bills were sent to a wrong address.

More than 100 residents had to pay the penalty as had received the bills after the due date. A senior officer in the post office said the department was short of staff. "A number of reminders have been sent to the higher authorities to recruit more postmen, but they did not respond," he said. Records of the postal department revealed that two months ago the post office at Sector 47 received around 3,000 electricity bills on June 29 which were to be delivered before July 4 as the last date for depositing the bills was July 5. Due to staff shortage, a number of residents received the bills after the due date.

On the working days, 10 postmen of the branch distribute the bills apart from delivering 13,000 routine mails. Sources in the department stated that the postmen deployed in the southern sectors were facing a tough time delivering the mail. Ditto is the situation in other post offices of the city. Sources said the issue pertaining to expansion was taken up with the authorities a number of times, but to no avail.



A tragedy in the waiting
OPD block of GMSH-16 without fire-safety clearance
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
The new OPD block at Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16, continues to function without obtaining clearance from the MC fire department. Risking the lives of patients, the hospital has been running its oxygen gas plant from the main building, right below the nursery where newborns are kept.

Thousands of patients visit the new OPD block everyday. Busy playing the blame game, the hospital administration and the UT engineering department have failed to take stock of the situation.

While the hospital authorities claim to have written to the engineering department asking it to remove the violations and relocate the gas plant, the engineering wing says a plan has to be chalked out by the hospital.

"We have been writing to the department," said Dr Rajiv Vadehra, Medical Superintendent, GMSH-16.

UT Chief Engineer SK Chadha said, "The hospital will have to draft a proposal. Being an executing body, we can only implement the same."

The patients are in the lurch. The new OPD building houses eight crucial departments that witness more than 2,000 patients everyday. The departments are medicine, skin, orthopaedics, physiotherapy, pediatrics, psychiatry, surgery, ENT and eye.

Officials of the fire department stated that permission for occupying a building could not be obtained without clearing fire-safety violations.

The violations

A corridor connecting the Emergency with the OPD block may obstruct the movement of a fire tender as their is no exit point. The department houses the autoclave unit where surgical instruments and linens are sterilised at a very high temperature. The nursery where newborns are shifted is also located next to the CSSD on the upper floor. In case of emergency, it will not be easy for the firemen to reach the unit. The new OPD building has also blocked certain locations which were earlier accessible to the fire tenders, said the fire department officials. There is only one entry and one exit point in the Emergency, making it difficult for the fire tenders to evacuate patients and staff in case of emergency.

Gas plant

The gas plant, also termed as Manifold Room, houses hundreds of highly combustible oxygen cylinders located adjacent to the labour room. The gas plant set up about two decades ago continues to function from the heart of the building to date. A senior doctor (retd) is learnt to have sent several advisories to the authorities highlighting the risk involved in operating the gas plant from the main building, but to no avail.



Health notes
Blood donation

Chandigarh: As a part of the 57th anniversary celebrations, the Chandigarh division of LIC organised a blood donation camp at its divisional office. Marketing manager of the division Jogender Kumar inaugurated the camp, along with Dr Suchet Sachdev of Blood Bank, PGI. As many as 100 employees, officers and agents of the LIC divisional office and local branches donated blood.

Dr Batra awarded

Padma Shri recipient and founder-chairman of Dr Batra’s Positive Health Clinic Dr Mukesh Batra has received ‘Asia’s Most Promising Leader in Healthcare’ award in a ceremony held in Dubai recently. Over 300 leaders in various fields from 18 Asian countries attended the ceremony.

Knee replacement

Gone are the days when patients used to be in bed for two to three days after a knee replacement surgery. Now, patients can walk within a few hours of the surgery and go home within 24 hours. This was explained by orthopaedic and knee replacement surgeon Dr Vineet Sharma at his Advanced Hip and Knee Clinic here. Gyalstenchok, a patient from Ladakh, who was operated on on August 16 was able to walk with minimal pain and discomfort within six hours of the surgery, he said.

Eye donation

The Eye Bank at Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, organised an eye donation awareness programme. During the awareness fortnight observed at the hospital, over 1,200 volunteers pledged their eyes for donation. — TNS



Protest: Students accuse art college teacher of sexual harassment
Tribune News Service

Holding paintings and sketches, students of the Government College of Art, Sector 10, protest at the Sector 17 Plaza in Chandigarh on Saturday.
Holding paintings and sketches, students of the Government College of Art, Sector 10, protest at the Sector 17 Plaza in Chandigarh on Saturday. Tribune photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, September 7
Students of the Government College of Art, Sector 10, converged on the Sector 17 Plaza, raising their voice against a teacher, who they accused of sexual harassment. The students said they had been protesting on the college premises, demanding the termination of services of the teacher; however, neither the college nor the UT Administration took note of it.

The students accused the teacher of verbally abusing girl students and threatening the students of spoiling their career.

The students were holding placards, paintings and sketches to express their resentment against the authorities.

“We will sit on hunger strike from the coming week on the college campus, if the authorities fail to act,” they said.

The college principal, Manohar Lal, when contacted, said an independent inquiry committee comprising four members from outside the college would look into the allegations.

“We have promised the students that a fair inquiry will be held, during which their grievances will be tabled before the committee,” he said.

The inquiry report will be sent to the UT Administration, said the principal.



‘Scheming’ mars housing board’s small flats
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
Over 8,000 jhuggi-dwellers, who are supposed to get the possession of one-room tenements at Dhanas are in a fix. Some colony leaders have been telling the beneficiaries that the houses would be taken back from them after 20 years.

Officials of the UT Administration, who are working overtime to make the Small Flat Scheme, 2006, a success, are spending sleepless nights.

The beneficiaries, too, are giving it a second thought.

While the Congress party is trying to take the credit for the scheme which will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on September 14, certain leaders of the opposition party are making efforts to spoil everything.

Secretary of the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) Mandeep Kaur said as per the allotment clause, the houses would be transferred in the names of the the allottees after 20 years. "They will have to pay the value of the property assessed then," Mandeep said.

Regarding the clearance of electricity dues, she said 400 jhuggi-dwellers who were shifter to pre-fabricated sheds in Sector 52 were to get the dues cleared. There is no such condition for those residing in Colony No.5. The dwellers should come to the CHB office in Sector 9 and get the formalities done.



22 head of cattle impounded
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
MC workers today impounded 22 head of cattle from Bapu Dham, Mauli Jagran, Vikas Nagar, Ram Darbar, Sectors 48, 52, 38, 24 and Dadu Majra. The corporation released 36 head of cattle after imposing a fine of Rs 1.10 lakh on owners.

Medical officer, health, enforcement and road wing, along with police personnel, carried out the drive.

The animals will not be released as keeping of animals within the municipal limits is not permissible.

A complaint will be filed against owners approaching the Municipal Corporation.

The MC commissioner instructed the staff to impound the animals roaming on roads.



Action sought against Rana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
The students sitting on an indefinite hunger strike outside the Vice-Chancellor’s office against the alleged rigging of student council elections at Panjab University today accused the National Students Union of India (NSUI) of violating the calendar by distributing printed material on the day of elections.

At a press conference, the agitating students belonging to various student organisations raised various issues and asked the university to take action against the winning candidate from the NSUI.

Leader of the Students Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) Robin Brar said the NSUI distributed T-shirts with presidential candidate Chandan Rana’s name printed on them before the polling started on the day of elections.

“This is a violation of the PU calendar, and despite a complaint submitted to the Vice-Chancellor (VC), no action was taken against the candidate,” he said.

Accusing the authorities of showing haste in declaring results in order to favour the NSUI, students said on September 4, of the total four department representatives elected from the University Institute of Engineering and Technology, the authorities declared an NSUI candidate as a winner besides two from SOPU and one from Panjab University Students Union (PUSU). However, on September 6, the university announced that the NSUI candidate did not win the elections, and it was another PUSU candidate who was the winner, they informed the media.

“This shows the haste that the PU administration showed in ensuring the results went in favour of the NSUI,” students alleged.

Dean Student Welfare Navdeep Goyal attributed the wrong results to a clerical error. He said as the name of the NSUI candidate, who bagged lesser votes, was written above the PUSU candidate, wrong results were declared.

“We accept the error. It was corrected immediately,” the DSW said.

The agitating students have demanded that the university provide them with the video-recording of the elections.

Meanwhile, various departments and the police responded to the students’ complaints.

Dr HSJ Institute of Dental Sciences

Complaint: The interns who had already voted five times—the upper limit—were allowed to vote for the sixth time.

Reply (principal Ashish Jain): Till the time the interns have not completed the course, they are students of the department. Being a student, they can vote during the polls. Moreover, I have not come across any rule stating that the students can not vote for the sixth time.

Department of Laws

Complaint: During counting of votes at the law department, when representatives of SOPU checked the ballot papers on the intervention of the DSW, it was found that three votes polled to the SOPU candidate were added to the count of the NSUI candidate.

Reply (chairperson Nishta Jaswal): Due to a mistake, one vote belonging to Amandeep Singh and three invalid votes were added to Chandan Rana’s vote-count. The mistake was found after we allowed the students to check the votes.

Department of Gandhian and Peace Studies

Complaint: MPhil students of the Gandhian studies department who took an extension for completion of their degree were allowed to vote, whereas the same concession was not extended to those from other departments.

Reply (DSW Navdeep Goyal): All the chairpersons of the teaching departments were directed that the MPhil students who took an extension should not be allowed to vote. However, mistakenly, the chairperson of the Gandhian studies department allowed eight such students to cast their votes. When I came to know of the mistake made by the chairperson, I immediately offered to cancel the votes if the student parties desired so.

Chandigarh Police

Complaint: Outsiders were caught at various departments, including pharmacy, philosophy, public administration and Gandhian studies. Though they were handed over to the police, they were let off, in connivance with the NSUI. Moreover, SOPU leader Robin Brar and former student council secretary Kuldeep Sheoran were picked by the police on the day of elections at 9.15 am and detained for a couple of hours.

Reply (Deputy Superintendent of Police (Central) Ashish Kapoor): We received the information that an incident of violence could occur at a PU department, following which the two students—Robin Brar and Kuldeep Sheoran—were detained. They were let off within less than half an hour, before the polling started. Meanwhile, no bogus voter was handed over to the police. One person was caught making forceful entry into the philosophy department. He was let off after verification, as there was no complaint of bogus voting against him.

PU authorities discuss rigging allegation

In a meeting attended by the Registrar and Dean University Instructions besides the local Senate members and faculty of Panjab University, the Dean Student Welfare threw light on the election process. The attendees were meeting to discuss the complaint of rigging of the student council elections made by various student organisations. “All the complaints are being addressed by the grievance cell. It will take a decision soon, which will be communicated to the students,” said PU officials.

The National Students Union of India protested outside the Vice-Chancellor’s residence, demanding that the election of department representative executive be held at the earliest. The elections, which were scheduled for Saturday, were postponed. The protestors also raised the demand for the oath-taking ceremony to be held without delay.



from schools
Schoolchildren have fun with puppets
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
A puppet extravaganza transported the audience to their childhood at Tribune Model School, Sector 29. Tiny tots of the kindergarten emphasised on values through their stories. Bonny Sodhi, wife of Justice SS Sodhi, chairperson, The Tribune Trust, was the guest of honour. She was overwhelmed to see the children’s performance. Principal Vandana Saxena thanked all the parents for their co-operation. She praised the teachers and teachers for putting up a wonderful show.

Art and craft exhibition

Young artisans of Saupin's School, Sector 32, showcased their works at an art and craft exhibition on the school premises. Parents flocked in huge numbers to praise the unique work prepared by children of Classes I to X. The exhibits included paintings, drawings, craftwork, clay-models and pottery, all made by the children.

Value education workshop

St. John’s High School, Sector 26, conducted a value education workshop for the teachers and staff. Uma Sridhar from Living Values Education was the resource person. Educators were asked to reflect on their own values, offer their ideas and were encouraged to build an optimal classroom environment.

Paper reading

An inter-section paper reading competition was held at Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School, Sector 26. Students of Classes VI to X talked on the topic “The Girl Child”. One student from each section was shortlisted for the competition. Various aspects like pronunciation, diction and modulation were taken into consideration. The importance of reading as an important skill for developing self confidence was stressed on.

Literacy Day

Mohali: International Literacy Day was celebrated at St. Paul’s International School, Phase VI. Students of Masoom, a project run by the school to provide free education to the school dropouts staying in the vicinity, had a gala time participating in fun activities.

Grandparents’ Day

To celebrate the relationship of children with their grandparents, Small Wonders School, Phase VII, celebrated Grandparents’ Day. The students attended the function along with their grandparents. Children expressed their love and gratitude towards the elderly by performing on various songs.



Schools invite bids for winter uniforms
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
Government schools in the city have floated tenders for procuring winter uniforms for children. With the UT Education Department easing the norms for purchasing winter uniforms, schools are hopeful of getting a better response from suppliers. Due to hard technical specifications and low price ceiling set for purchasing summer uniforms, schools had to face a lot of problems.

Principal of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 16, Anujit Kaur said the Education Department approved an increase of Rs 50 per student in the upper price ceiling for purchasing winter uniforms.

“The increase is expected to draw a good response from suppliers,” she said.

During the purchase of summer uniforms, the upper price ceiling was Rs 300 for every set for Classes I to V, and Rs 375 per set for Classes VI to VIII.

For the purchase of winter uniforms, the upper ceiling has been increased to Rs 350 per set for Classes I to V and Rs 425 for Classes VI to VIII.

The winter uniform will comprise a full-sleeve shirt and a pant for boys and a shirt and a tunic for girls.

An official of the department said the changes were made after government schools complained about the dismal response received from suppliers while purchasing summer uniforms. The schools can also make changes in the technical specifications issued by the department, he said.

Director Public Instructions (Schools) Upkar Singh said the department was closely monitoring the process and was hopeful that it would be over by the end of October.



Teachers make city proud
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 7
Several teachers have made the city proud by getting national recognition for their meritorious career. Parvinder Grover of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 35, and Updesh Kaur of KV-3 BRD Air Force Station were bestowed with the National Award for Best Teachers. Presented by the President of India, Pranab Mukherjee, the award carried a certificate of merit, cash prize and a silver medal.

The coveted ‘CBSE Award for the Teacher of the Year’ was conferred on Dr Earnest Charles J Samuel, principal of Mount Carmel School, Sector 47-B, in recognition of his “valuable contribution in the field of education”. The award was presented to him at a function held at India International Centre.

Dr Vinod Kumar Sharma, head of Government Model High School, Sector 34, received Shiksha Rattan Award and a certificate of excellence for meritorious services from India International Friendship Society (IIFS) at New Delhi

Another teacher from Chandigarh, Neena Rani Sharma, featured on the KVS National Incentive Award list for the year 2013. She is currently teaching at Kendriya Vidyalaya, Sector 29.



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