C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Earthmovers level half of Colony No. 5
Tribune News Service

A woman cries as the UT staff demolish her house
A woman cries as the UT staff demolish her house. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Chandigarh, November 20
The UT Administration today demolished 50 per cent structures of the biggest slum of the city, Colony No. 5, which is also one of the huge vote banks of the city politicians. The colony had a population of around 70,000.

Unlikely, the staff of the UT Administration did not face much protest as the residents were already vacating their houses.

Panic gripped the residents of the colony when 20 JCB machines reached the colony early in the morning along with around 2,000 policemen, two-riot control vehicles, a water cannon and the senior officials of the UT Administration and the Police Department. The police had cordoned off the colony and electricity supply to the area had been cut off to help the enforcement staff carry out the drive. The roads leading to the colony were also closed by the staff.

The Administration started the demolition drive at 8.30 am, before any politician could reach the spot. The staff first targeted the hutments near the societies in Sector 51 and had cleared all the hutments in Sector 51 by 6 pm. The Administration will demolish such structures in Sector 50 on November 21.

Many residents accused the UT officials of not giving them enough time to retrieve their belongings. Residents were seen retrieving luxury household items like air-conditioners and microwave ovens from the debris.

Families rendered homeless

Sunita Devi, who had been staying in the colony for the past 20 years, said last year her husband had died and she was looking after her three children with great difficulty. She was raising them by working as a maid in the nearby societies. Now, she doesn't know how she will look after them.

Traffic affected

The roads leading to the colony were seen choked with vehicles. Buses approaching the ISBT-43 remained stranded in the jam. Traffic coming from the Mohali side was severely affected. The jams started in the morning and heavy congestion was seen for a major part of the day.

Politicians fail to convince UT officials

Senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan, BSP leader Jannat Jahan-ul-Haq, Congress councillor Harphool Kalyan, Congress Colony Cell leader Shashi Shankar Tiwari and many others had reached the spot but failed to convince UT Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Shayin to stop the drive. He clearly told the leaders that the Administration would continue with the drive.

Construction of road begins in Sector 51

As a team of the Administration demolished the structures, the staff of the Engineering Department started the construction of a V6 road (inner roads in sectors) in Sector 51. They were levelling and fencing the land after the demolition drive.

Land to be developed as a commercial belt

The 50-acre land, which will be vacated in the demolition drive, is worth about Rs 1,000-1,200 crore. It will be developed as a commercial belt by the UT Administration.


  • Not only youngsters, but elderly people and children were also busy shifting their household items.
  • Residents were raising slogans against the UT Administration and Local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal.
  • Colony residents gheraoed local Congress councillor Harphool Kalyan but another Congress leader Shashi Shankar Tiwari controlled the situation.



Allotment letter seekers throng camp office
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
Trying their luck to get the allotment letters of rehabilitation tenements built at Dhanas, a large number of residents of Colony Number 5, who were rendered homeless after the demolition drive, reached the camp office set up at the Sector 42 stadium by the Estate Office for checking confirmation of the houses allotted to residents under a rehabilitation scheme.

Heated arguments were exchanged between the colony residents and the officials for the whole day on the delay in issuing allotment letters. The police were deployed at the camp office and they had a tough time to manage the crowds standing in queues.

A majority of the claimants, who turned up at the camp office, stated the authorities had been harassing them for the last four months by not issuing them the allotment letters.

Nand Ji (24) said as the demolition of Colony Number 5 was going on, he had left his pregnant wife at the colony and reached the camp office in the morning to get the allotment letter. However, till 1 pm, no official had verified his documents, he said.

The officials deployed at the camp office said the camp office had been functional for the past eight months. It has been set up by the UT Estate Office to verify documents and issue allotment letters. Most of the claimant, who turned up today, did not visit the office on the date allotted to them, nor they submitted all the documents required for the claim.

Families to be shifted to temporary tenements

The UT Deputy Commissioner directed the officials concerned that families of Colony Number 5, whose cases were pending due to the delay in proceedings, should be shifted to temporary tenements of Sector 52 till houses are allotted to them at Dhanas.



Youth murdered in Panchkula
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 20
A 23-year-old youth was allegedly murdered by his friends on the pretext of taking him on an outing. An injured Gurvinder, a resident of Banna village in Sector 25, Panchkula, was dumped at the General Hospital, Sector 6, Panchkula, late last night.

A patient's attendant saw Gurvinder and informed the hospital authorities, who examined him and found that he was breathing. He was referred to the PGIMER, Chandigarh, where he was declared dead on arrival.

According to the preliminary investigations by the police, it seems the victim was given some poisonous substance and then thrashed by miscreants. The victim left his home last morning at 9 am after he was called by one of his friends. He told his family that he was going for an outing with them.

"Yesterday, Gurvinder asked his cousin to drop him at the Morni T-point. His cousin said there were four youths sitting in a Bolero car where he dropped him. In the afternoon, Gurvinder spoke to his mother over the phone and told her that he would return soon," said his brother-in-law Kuldeep Singh.

He added: "The attendant who informed the hospital authorities had seen the same white Bolero car when he was dumped at the hospital."

A post-mortem examination of the body was conducted by a board of doctors. "The spleen is badly damaged. Injury marks are there on the back and abdominal. The stomach is totally congested, which indicates heavy poisoning," said a forensic expert, Dr Sunil Gambhir. A case has been registered under sections 302 (murder) and 328 (poisoning).

Old rivalry suspected

The police has detained a youth of Ramgarh, who had a scuffle with Gurvinder three months ago. Labourers were carrying out some construction work outside the victim's house when the youth allegedly hit one of them with a spade in protest against the blocking of the road for the work. The victim was involved in a financial dispute with the accused. Some time ago, he had also lodged a DDR with the Chandi Mandir police, stating that the youths whom he sold his expensive mobile phone worth ~45,000, did not pay him the amount.



Panchkula murder: Victim had married two months ago
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 20
It seemed the world crashed down for Gurvinder’s wife as the couple had got married just two months ago. According to the family members, Gurvinder was planning to settle abroad. He was the only son after his three sisters and the only male in the house as his father had died 15 years ago after some prolonged illness. All of his sisters are married.

“Several times, he told us that as he has got settled now after marrying off his sisters and even he too had got married, he wanted to establish some work in Canada. We told him to wait for the same and he was even collecting money to settle down there,” said brother in law Kuldeep.

He added, “Had we not asked him to wait, he would not have died.”

Gurvinder had celebrated his birthday in a grand manner on September 11 just two days after his wedding. He had seven acres of land on highway near Jagadri and was involved in farming.

Suicidal tendencies too!

In a strange revelation after the postmortem, forensic expert Dr Sunil Gambhir said the victim had suicidal tendencies. “He has multiple cuts on his left wrist which showed that he had suicidal tendencies. It indicated that he tried to slit his writ several times but could not do so.” The police are now investigating as to what problem the victim was facing that was keeping him under stress which the family wasn’t aware of.



destination it@north conclave
Infosys, Dell bag awards for highest exports
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
On the first day of the Destination IT@North conclave, Software Technology Parks of India, Mohali, recognised some of the best performing IT and ITeS companies of the regions for exports for 2012-13. Infosys Limited was given Highest Exports performance award in the software development category while Dell International Services bagged the honour for IT-enabled Services.

For software exports from amongst the SME sectors, Chandigarh-based Fidelity Information Services, Punjab’s Emerson Information Technology Solution, and Haryana’s Xportsoft Technologies were adjudged the best. QA Infotech was recognised with Fast Tracker Award in the tricity sector.

Among the SMEs in the ITeS segment, Agilyst Consulting of Chandigarh, IDS Infotech of Mohali, and Webart Softech from Haryana, won the highest exports awards while RVA Electronics received highest exports award under EHTP from the tricity.

STPI also recognised several other IT companies in the tricity area under various categories. Jitin and Komal Talwar of Talwar & Talwar Consultants got the Best Product of the Year Award, Mayank Mathur of uTrade Solutions for Innovative Idea of the year in the fields of software development and ITeS categories, Munish Johar of Gray Cell Technologies Exports, received the award for the Best Socially Active Unit.

Vishal Kedia of Develop Tech received the Emerging Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, while GD Gupta of Bursys Infotech and Trilochan Singh were honoured with ‘The Senior’s Passion for IT’ awards.



Missing hunter approach to blame for fewer giants in IT Park
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Dr Omkar Rai
Dr Omkar Rai

Chandigarh, November 20
Even as the Chandigarh IT Park was dreamt to be a common hub for the IT companies spread across the tricity, it has failed to accommodate all the companies in one go. Also, not many major IT giants invested in it. As experts at the Destination IT@North conclave assessed the reasons for this, the Director-General of the Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), Dr Omkar Rai, said Chandigarh couldn't be compared with Bangalore as it fell in the tier II city category.

On the contrary, in a Chandigarh Tricity Location Assessment report, the NASSCOM-Cushman & Wakefield representatives stated that the lack of marketing of the infrastructure in the tricity, supposed to be the best, is to be blamed for fewer IT giants investing here.

“It is the hunter model, which should have been followed for transforming the IT Sector. The hunter model is an approach when the government pushes big market players to invest in their specific cities or states,” said Priyankar Bhikshu, Director, Account Management, Asia Pacific Corporate Occupier and Investor Services, Cushman and Wakefield.

The overall assessment of the report is that the tricity has moved up but could have moved higher seeing its potential.

The study, which covers 20 cities across the country, has been prepared keeping in mind several parameters like talent pool, social infrastructure, business environment, government support, physical infrastructure, operational efficiency and real estate costs.

Mr Bhikshu, while addressing a session on NASSCOM's Power Forum, said the tricity also enjoyed key advantages like high English proficiency, close proximity to IT BPM hubs like Gurgaon and Noida, continued focus on enhancing employees' skills through training and development, besides also having a reasonable enabling environment to the IT-BPM companies.

The city has surpassed the industry average growth of 1.8 times as the IT-BPM revenue in the tricity has increased by more than three times in the last five years, the report says.

With the saturation of IT in tier 1 cities, the trend is gradually shifting to tier II and III cities, led by the availability of infrastructure, supportive policy and reform measures and cost competitiveness, he said.

At present, 35,000 IT professionals are working in 128 IT companies in the tricity. Dr Onkar said Chandigarh (Tricity) IT industry had shown three times the national growth rate reaching 20% in the last fiscal year.

City to have more IT incubation centres

“While the IT Park has a functional Entrepreneur Development Centre (EDC), the existing government buildings can also be used for setting up such additional centres. The governments should provide independent spaces and come up with more IT Parks and allocate budgets to promote the IT industry,” said UT Adviser to the Administrator K K Sharma. He also announced that the Chandigarh Administration would be coming up with its IT Policy shortly. “Not many jobs can be created in bigger companies but start-ups have huge potential and bright future ahead with so much of innovation happening around us,” he added.



No IT giants to come up in Mohali
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
The upcoming Mohali-IT Park will only house startup companies while no big companies will have space. Speaking to the Chandigarh Tribune, Director General STPI, Dr Omkar Rai, said, “The startup companies are always product-based and hence work on specific innovations. The higher will be their number, the more will be the new job opportunities.”

“We have decided to provide space to the startup companies on cost-to-cost basis since we want to promote them and ensure their growth. Large companies will lead to disruptive growth,” Dr Rai added.

The IT Park is expected to be ready in next one year. Following a recent inspection carried out by the STPI, the CPWD assured that the work will be complete in a year.

The complex would spread over an area of 100,000 square feet. The IT Park will also have incubation centres, spread over 25,000 square feet.

Rai also said that the number of IT students passing out from educational institutions in the tricity was much higher than the number of jobs available. The idea was to create more jobs in the area to accommodate them.


Better Panchkula
Residents suffer as stray dogs, cattle rule city roads
Residents of Panchkula continue to become victims of stray dogs and cattle, but the civic body seems to have kept its eyes shut to the menace. In the concluding part of the series, The Tribune reporter Hina Rohtaki and photographer Nitin Mittal check the ground reality

Stray dogs and cattle have a free run in Panchkula with the authorities making no efforts to curb the menace. Over 1,000 dog bite cases have been reported at city hospitals so far.
Dogs roam freely on a road at Sector 15
(Above) Dogs roam freely on a road at Sector 15; and (below) a stray cattle stands on the road dividing Sectors 14 and 15 in Panchkula.
a stray cattle stands on the road dividing Sectors 14 and 15 in Panchkula

Stray cattle menace has been curbed to some extent after the formation of a cowshed in the Mata Mansa Devi Mandir Complex, which has a capacity of 1,200 animals. The shed was inaugurated on the first day of Navratras this year in October. Since then, the drive to catch the stray cattle is on. Till now, around 380 animals have been caught out of around 500 stray cattle in Panchkula. Earlier, the Panchkula Municipal Corporation was facing a space crunch to keep the stray cattle due to which the drive was suspended.

Panchkula General Hospital ready to deal with dog bite cases

Civil Surgeon VK Bansal said the facility of providing anti-rabies vaccine was available 24 hours at the General Hospital, Sector 6, Panchkula. The hospital was always ready to deal with such cases.

Man hurt in mishap due to stray dogs

Yesterday, a resident of Sector 25, Panchkula, suffered injuries after his two-wheeler skidded when stray dogs came in his way. The victim, Aditya, was rushed to the General Hospital, Sector 6, Panchkula. He suffered injuries on his back and arm.

Number of stray dogs, cattle

Panchkula has around 2,500 stray dogs and 500 stray cattle. The town also faces a huge problem when cattle owners of Chandigarh leave their animals to roam freely on the borders of Panchkula.

Dog sterilisation process halted

After a long hiatus, sterilisation process was again started in Panchkula. The process was going smoothly and the authorities had sterilised around 30 stray dogs. However, the villagers of Devinagar staying near Government Pet Clinic, Sector 3, where the dogs are kept for around five days after sterilisation, said they were not able to sleep the entire night because of the noise created by the dogs. Due to this, the sterilisation process has been halted. Sources said it was a political manoeuvring that forced the villagers to oppose the process. Dr MR Singla, in charge of Government Pet Clinic, said: “We are getting another shed ready with a capacity of 40 dogs. After that, the sterilisation process will again start.” Recently, as many as 14 persons of the same locality in Sector 15 were bitten by stray dogs in Panchkula. Fear has gripped the locality after the incident and children have been forced to stay indoors.

Sound proof pet clinic soon

OP Sihag, executive officer of the Municipal Corporation, said the shed, which they were constructing for sterilised dogs at the pet clinic, would be sound proof so that the nearby residents were not disturbed. The executive officer said a fine of Rs 5,000 was being imposed on those who left their cattle to graze.

Stray cattle issue in court

Pankaj Chandgothia, advocate and social activist, had earlier filed a public interest litigation against the DC, the MC and the SP (Traffic), Panchkula, accusing them of neglecting their duty of ensuring the safety of commuters and failing to keep the city roads free of fatal obstructions. Chandgothia submitted that if the acts of omission and commission being committed by the defendants are allowed to sustain and continue, the public will suffer grievous, irreparable harm, injury and loss. Stray cattle are often found sitting or moving in the middle of busy roads, leading to sudden breaking by vehicles, giving rise to the risk of accidents and resultant injuries and loss of life and also damage to vehicles. The case is going on in the court.

Orders fall on deaf ears

The Deputy Commissioner of Police had issued directions in May to all lower officials that whenever they see a stray cattle, they would ring up 100 and coordinate with the MC to remove the same. But the directions seem to have been fallen on deaf ears.


  • People should stop feeding stray dogs and cattle.
  • Sterilisation process should be intensified to make the city free from stray dogs.
  • Stray dogs should be shifted to dog pounds.
  • Strict action should be taken against those feeding stray dogs and cattle.



MC ready to merge 13 villages
Says Periphery Control Act will not be applicable; proposal to be discussed today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
The Municipal Corporation in its proposal regarding merger of 13 UT villages in the MC, has demanded that the civic body is ready for inclusion but the Periphery Control Act, will not be applicable on these villages after the merger.

The proposal will come up for discussion in the special house meeting on November 21, which was called after the UT Administration had sought MC view’s on the proposed merger.

Mayor Subhash Chawla said that they are ready for merger but the Chandigarh Administration shall issue notification to the effect that the revenue estate as well as Abadi Deh area of all 13 villages shall be notified to be the Municipal Area of Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh and the provisions of the Capital of Punjab (Development & Regulation) Act, 1952 shall be extended to the entire area and the Punjab New Capital (Periphery) Control Act shall not apply to the existing construction, he added.

Besides this condition, proposal reads, “The planning of the area of the said villages, including the revenue estate shall be under the control of the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh. The Chandigarh Administration shall bear the entire expenditure under Plan and Non-Plan in respect of the area of aforesaid villages at least for a period of five years.

There shall be no house tax on commercial as well as residential property during the next five years due to the reason that their source of income will almost dry up due to application of certain Acts and Rules in the said area which had already been notified by the Chandigarh Administration/Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh.”

“Before the inclusion of the said area, the administration shall increase the number of wards for elected Councillors in consultation with the Corporation. The existing prominent persons of the Gram Panchayats, Zila Parishad and Panchyat Samiti shall be given due representation in the various Advisory Committees which are constituted by the Chandigarh Administration from time to time,” proposal further reads.



demolition of colony no. 5
Village landlords cash in on residents’ misery
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
While Colony No. 5 residents were rendered homeless after the demolition drive, it was business time for many landlords of the nearby villages of Burail and Kajheri. They were renting out one-room accommodation to the affected colony residents between Rs 4,000 and Rs 5,000 against the normal rent of Rs 2,500.

Rajnath, who runs a phari, said he rented a one-room accommodation in Burail village for Rs 4,500. Last week, his friend had rented a one-room accommodation for Rs 2,500 but now these building owners have suddenly hiked the rent, he added. Around 90 affected families rented rooms at Burail and around 50-60 families at Kajheri village. Kanta Devi, who had hired a mini-truck to shift her belongings to Kajheri village, said her husband today rented a one-room accommodation for Rs 5,000 at Kajheri.

A landlord of Burail said they had constructed these rooms to earn money so there was no harm in renting them out to the colony residents. Meanwhile, those colony residents who had not shifted to the slum rehabilitation scheme flats at Dhanas, finally started shifting their household things in trucks to the complex. There was a huge rush at Dhanas in the evening.

Temporary sheds set up

Many colony residents have constructed temporary sheds in open spaces of Sector 44, 45, 50 and 51 for the time being.



Dhawan, other BJP leaders sent to jail
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
Former Union Minister and senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan, members of the Ekta Samiti and around 400 persons courted arrest in Colony No. 5 against the demolition drive today.
Residents shift their belongings to Dhanas Colony (EWS) in Chandigarh on Wednesday
Residents shift their belongings to Dhanas Colony (EWS) in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photos: Vicky Gharu and S Chandan

They taken to police stations of Sector 34, 39 and Mani Majra in seven CTU buses.

Dhawan said they had demanded some time from the Administration so that the colony residents could shift their household items but the Administration rejected their request.

Later in the evening, the police released a majority of protesters while Harmohan Dhawan, former councillor Anil Dubey and 13 others were sent to the Burail Jail.

Delegation meets Advisor

A delegation of the BJP, led by state party president Sanjay Tandon, met UT Adviser KK Sharma and submitted a memorandum with their demands related to the rehabilitation of Colony No. 5 residents and merger of various villages into the municipal limits.



encroachments in mohali
Admn toughens stance
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 20
As the demolition of colony number 5 continues, the Mohali’s administration and police authorities are on high alert to evade any encroachment on the panchayati land by the slum dwellers.

Several teams of Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA), the Mohali police, and district administration were keeping an eye on the residents of colony, who were shifting their goods to other places.

“We have been directed to check encroachments on government land or gram panchayat land,” said an official of the district administration team deployed at the entry of Jagatpura village.

He alleged that several residents of the colony were migrating to Mohali villages like Jagatpura and Kandala.

The Mohali Deputy Commissioner, Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu, said several teams have been deployed in areas where colony residents were shifting their bases.

“So far, no report of encroachment has come up, but we are surely on high alert on the issue,” said Mohali Deputy Commissioner Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu.

The vigilance by teams would continue in coming days. “Till the time the residents do not settle down to the new surroundings, we will continue to keep a check,” said an official.



‘Indian Cinema’ theme for Chandigarh Carnival
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
“Dabangg”,“Don”,”Namastey London” and “3 Idiots “ are some of the names of the stalls at the Chandigarh Carnival, starting from November 22, at Leisure Valley, Sector 10.

The celebration of 100 years of Indian Cinema is the theme of the carnival this year. Artists from Delhi and Mumbai been invited to paint the portraits of film stars to be used during the carnival.

The students of Government Arts College, Sector 10, are putting a lot of efforts to give a filmy touch to the carnival parade, conceptualised on the theme of Indian Cinema. Several local institutes have their stalls at the carnival and each one of them has been given a unique name inspired from a movie.

For instance, the stall of the local police will be called “Dabangg” and the Chandigarh Lalit Kala Akademi's stall is tagged as “Painter Babu”.

Senior citizen corner is named after movie Baghban. Baker's Zone, Mount View is named as “Bawarchi”. The stall of Alliance Francaise, Sector 36, is named as “Ishq in Paris”. British Library is tagged as “Namastey London”. Government Museum and Art Gallary, Sector 10, is named after the movie “Guide”. The CIHM stall is Cheeni Kum and the Le Corbusier Centre, Sector 19, is named as “Yaadein”.

AK Malhotra, GM, CITCO, said this year, the carnival would pay its tribute to the glorious 100 years of Indian Cinema. All the activities around the carnival, including the carnival main gate and floats have been conceptualised around the cinematic theme.

"Three musical nights of Amit Sana, Amrinder Gill and KK will be organised during the carnival," he said.

With two days left for the event, the artists have already painted over 60 portraits of the actors of 60's and 70's to be displayed at the carnival. The team also has senior artists who have made posters for many Bollywood movies. The Tribune is the media sponsor for this event.



Hospital security guard dies

Chandigarh, November 20
A 35-year-old security guard died of heart attack while on duty at the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32 (GMCH-32), today. The deceased, identified as Virender Singh, collapsed around 10 am while he was serving at the entry point on a floor below the emergency ward.

Virender had been working with the GMCH-32 for the past four years. According to officials, Virender complained of breathlessness and collapsed while on duty near the entrance. He was immediately rushed into the emergency. However, the doctors could not revive him. — TNS



Popularity of Ajitgarh vs Mohali

After reorganisation of Punjab in 1966, a thickly populated, modern and fast developing industrial town situated on the outskirts of City Beautiful - Chandigarh was originally named as "Mohali" after the name of a village falling in the vicinity of the town. When Mohali had already gained much name and fame on the world map, its nomenclature was changed to Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar, most commonly known as SAS Nagar, after the name of the elder son of Guru Gobind Singh. However, SAS Nagar could not gain as much popularity as Mohali, primarily due to the reason that being a single word name, it is comfortable to the people's tongue. Moreover, the world renowned cricket stadium is also named after its old and original name. Not only this, most of the websites, and public places still carry its original name Mohali. SAS Nagar was once again renamed as Ajitgarh about one and a half years back, but it has not yet gained much popularity. In almost all government offices, the original name Mohali is as commonly used as it was being used earlier. The residents of the city still prefer to use the original name of the city.

Hardeep Singh Slaich, Mohali

Unfair tax

Through this column, I want to share my thoughts on the issue of imposition of property tax in Sector 25, Panchkula. Though it is understood that property tax is an important part of development of infrastructure, the Panchkula Municipal Corporation would do well to review its decision of imposing property tax on the land owners in Sector 25 and exempt them from paying the same. It would help take into consideration the following points: 1. The MC provides no service for public infrastructure development in the sector and all tasks of the MC are carried out by Haryana Urban Development Authority (as highlighted earlier in this paper). And therefore the state government notification on property tax bearing No. S.O. 85/HA, 16/1994/S dated 11 October 2013 is void and can't have retrospective effect to recover the tax. 2. Though there has been an increase of properties in Sector 25/trans-Ghaggar sectors, the area is still in a 'developing phase' when it comes to construction work. Not to mention, some urban infrastructure services have deteriorated due to lack of maintenance (for example, roads and play grounds) causing inconvenience to residents. Besides, garbage is still being dumped at a landfill site in the Sector-23 dumping ground. 3. Normally, there's a connection between the imposition of property tax and the enhancement in property value. But since this condition doesn't hold true in Sector 25, using it as a rationale for imposing property tax is also unfair. It may be recalled thatuntil recently, the enhanced compensation on account of land acquisitions was being charged from the house owners in Sector 25 and other trans-Ghaggar sectors.

MK Lall, Panchkula



House Owners Welfare Association seeks removal of encroachments
Our Correspondent

Mohali, November 20
The House Owners Welfare Association of Phase I here has demanded probe into the encroachments in the market area of Phase I by rehri owners and the alleged substandard work on pave blocks, being done by the engineering wing of the Municipal Corporation.

In letters sent to the Deputy Commissioner and the corporation Commissioner, Association general secretary Harbinder Singh Saini said the parking problem in the Phase I market had worsened due to encroachments by rehri owners and tea vendors. He alleged that an office-bearer of the market body was taking Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 per month from each encroacher.

Association members said due to the parking problem, many visitors were parking their vehicles in residential areas posing inconvenience to the residents of the area.

The association has sought relief from the encroachments in the market.

He further alleged that the level of the pave blocks was not upto the mark. Quite often no corporation official was ever seen supervising the work, he added.



Live surgeries demonstrated
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 20
Dr Wiliam Jason, a US-based doctor, shared his expertise in the field of joint replacement with the doctors of the SGHS Hospital at Sohana, here today.

In presence of Dr Jason, who has been practising for the past 27 years, Dr Gagndeep Singh Sachdeva performed five knee replacement surgeries at the hospital.



biz briefs
Property show ‘Grahapravesh’ on Nov 23

IndiaProperty.com, online property portal is all set to launch their flagship property show titled ‘Grahapravesh’ in Chandigarh. The 19th edition of the country’s biggest property show will be held at Himachal Bhavan, Madhya Marg.

The show will commence on November 23 and continue till November 24. As many as 40 top builders will be participating in the 19th edition of the property show. Top builders will be displaying their projects on the occasion. As many as 120 projects will be exhibited by the top builders on both the days.— TNS



Logic that worked for world’s cheapest tablet Akash
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Amit Goyal
Amit Goyal

Chandigarh, November 20
Even after spending Rs 20,000 to 25,000 on a smartphone, majority of users end up restricting themselves to four or five basic functions.

These often include calls, text messaging, taking pictures or Internet. Then why pay so much extra? asks the man who applied this logic while innovating world’s cheapest tablet-Akash.

“Technology alone cannot make you stand apart. Applying innovation is the key. We spent lesser on the extra features and yet came up with the tablet that provides all the basic features while featuring internal memory as well as processor equivalent to that in any of the hi-end tablets other companies have been manufacturing,” said Amit Goyal, vice-president, Datawind Technologies, the company that developed the famous tablet.

The purpose of Akash was to meet the need of search engines for students for enhancing their knowledge.

Since the government wanted to reach out more to the underprivileged and poor children, our second challenge was to ensure Internet connectivity, Goyal added.

3G network in a village did not seem a reality at least in the present set-up and we then developed a processor that could run internet in the 2G network-the basic network that all of us have in our phones, he said.

The Central Government has recently raised demand for 221 million more tablets. The company, meanwhile, sold 3.1 million units of the tablet at Rs 3,700 each in 2012. With Government subsidy, the tablet costs Rs 2,500 each.



Erratic water supply affects residents in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
More than 15 sectors of the city did not receive evening water supply here today. There was no water supply in sectors, including sectors 22 to sector 25, sector 35 to sector 43 and Dadumajra area.

The MC officials said that the evening water supply was affected due to a repair work of the water supply line at sector 23 and sector 36 diving road. Even as the repair work was completed by evening, the supply could not be restored, said officials. Residents however allege the mis-management on the part of the authorities.



Lecturers demand change in service rules
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 20
Hundreds of commuters were put to a lot of inconvenience when members of the Government School Lecturers Union blocked the traffic on Phase VII road near YPS Chowk this evening.

The protestors, who were intending to move towards Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal's residence at Chandigarh, sat on the road after being stopped by the police near the chowk.

Adding insult to injury, traffic flow on several roads in the area was already prevented by the Chandigarh Police in wake of the demolition at the Colony Number 5.

Earlier, the lecturers held a protest in front of Director General School Education's office at Phase VIII in the afternoon and then started their protest march on the Mohali roads at around 3.30 pm. The main demand of the protestors was amendment in the Service Rules 2004 before December 31 and verification of experience certificates of head teachers, who had been recruited directly in 2006 and later elevated to principals.

The dharna near the YPS chowk was lifted on assurance of arranging meeting with Badal by the Principal Secretary Gurkirat Kirpal Singh.

Meanwhile, most of the roads in the area were witnessing long queues of vehicles. The police had a tough time to handle the situation.



Vivek High School-38 gives itself minority tag
Education Department takes a serious note of the school’s advertisement
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
Is Vivek High School, Sector 38, a minority institute? The school declared itself a minority institute in its recent advertisement issued for inviting applications for the next session’s admission process.

The UT Education Department took a serious note of the said advertisement.

DPI (S) Kamlesh Kumar said the move by the school was misleading. The school had yet not been granted the minority status by the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI).

He said the case of Vivek High School regarding the granting of the minority status was sub judice in the NCMEI court, New Delhi, and would come up for hearing on March 24 next year.

“To declare itself a minority institute before being officially granted the status is a clear violation of the law. The department will definitely take strict action against the school,” he said.

HS Mamik, chairman of the school, defended himself by saying that the school had claimed for the minority status as per the Constitution of India.

“We fulfil all the conditions required for claiming the minority status. Although the authentication of the grant of the minority status to the school is still pending before the NCMEI court, New Delhi, it does not debar us from declaring the school a minority institute,” said Mamik, also a president of the Independent School Association.

Kamlesh Kumar said the school should set the precedence of uprightness for others and avoid such misleading practices.

District Education Officer RK Sharma also confirmed that Vivek High School was not a minority institute as per the department’s records. RK Sharma said necessary action would be taken against the school for using the minority institute tag.

As per information, the Education Department also filed an affidavit in the NCMEI earlier this year stating that several private schools in Chandigarh were trying to get the minority status to avoid the implementation of the Right to Education Act.

Recently, the department also challenged the minority status granted to Saupin’s School, Sector 32, and New Public School, Sector 18.



Sub-panel for minority community to be formed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 20
A sub-committee will be constituted to draft a policy for giving representation to the minority community in various bodies of Panjab University. This was decided in a meeting chaired by Sardar Tarlochan Singh, former MP and ex-chairperson of the National Minority Commission, here today.

An issue was raised at a meeting of the 16-member committee that the university has different structures for electing the Senators but during the selection of nominated members, fair representation is not given to the minorities. The members recommended that the sub-committee should draft policy on the basis of which the minority community should be given representation in any body of the university.

Another issue that was discussed in the meeting was about roaster for the non-teaching staff.



pu and college notes
Workshop held
Delegates take part in a workshop at the Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42, in Chandigarh, on Wednesday
Delegates take part in a workshop at the Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42, in Chandigarh, on Wednesday. Tribune photo: S Chandan

A one-day workshop on the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) - a road map for excellence in higher education - was held at the Post Graduate Government College for Girls-42, on Wednesday. Sandeep Hans, UT Director Higher Education, was the chief guest on the occasion. Over 100 members, including teaching and supportive staff, principals from the city government colleges as well as from the office of the Directorate of Higher Education, participated in the workshop.

Lecture delivered

Sardar Tarlochan Singh, former MP and ex-chairperson of the National Minority Commission, on Wednesday delivered a lecture on the need for more research topics related to Gurbani at Panjab University. The lecture was organised by the Department of Guru Nanak Sikh Studies, PU. Addressing the research scholars and teachers from various local colleges, PU fellow Sardar Tarlochan Singh said nowadays our research was focusing upon issues related to environment, social justice, women empowerment and human rights but these issues had already been covered by Sikh Gurus in their Bani before the Renaissance. He also inspired research scholars to take up more research issues regarding the Guru Granth Sahib.

Entrance test schedule

Panjab University has announced the entrance test schedule for admission for session 2014-15 at the university. The PU Common Entrance Test (PU-CET) for undergraduate classes will be conducted on May 25, 2014. The admission to undergraduate classes is done through PU-CET (UG). While the PU Common Entrance Test for postgraduate classes will be conducted from June 13 to June 16, 2014. For Management Entrance Test, the University Institute of Applied Management Sciences will conduct the entrance test on March 15, 2014.

Check-up camp

The medical committee of MCM DAV College, Sector 36, on Wednesday organised a free health check-up camp for its students as well as teaching and non-teaching staff. Dr Puneet Bedi, principal of the college, inaugurated the camp, which witnessed a huge turnout. Besides providing free consultation, the team of doctors also gave useful tips for healthy living. An organ donation registration drive was also held in collaboration with the PGIMER. As many as 45 students registered themselves for organ donation. — TNS



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |