C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Now, Jain in FB ‘likes’ web 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
After local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal, former MP and BJP leader Satya Pal Jain has filed a complaint with the police regarding unusual increase in ‘likes’ on his Facebook page.

Yesterday, Bansal had submitted a complaint to the UT Inspector General of Police (IGP) to inquire about an increase in likes on his Facebook page,

In his complaint to the Inspector General of Police, Jain said he had been maintaining his Facebook page since March 2009 and his followers/likes gradually crossed 60,000 on December 15.

He said his page received daily increase in likes ranging between 650 and 750 till December 23, but it witnessed an increase of 2,719 likes on December 24 and 6,039 likes on December 25.

Jain expressed apprehension that the sudden increase in likes in the span of two days and that too of foreign nationals was the handiwork of mischievous elements. The police have now marked the complaint to the cyber crime cell.

An official of the cyber crime cell said they have written to the Facebook headquarters in the US asking them for the details of IP addresses of computers from where the likes were hit.

Yesterday, Bansal had complained that there were around 51,600 likes on his Facebook page earlier. But yesterday, he found that the likes were 62,500. “It all had happened with 24 hours, which showed that somebody was doing it without my knowledge,” said Bansal.

Recently, it was highlighted in the media that city BJP president Sanjay Tandon and another senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan got a huge number of likes from Turkish capital Istanbul. 



Police fail to collect evidence 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
The rear-view mirror of Santro car that hit Jyoti is with the employer of the girl’s parents. A crucial evidence in the case, the police have not bothered to collect it. The UT police have also not bothered to record statements of two eyewitnesses who had noted down the registration number of the car.

“I noted down the registration number of the Santro car (CH04-J-1221). The driver of the car sped away after hitting the girl,” said head constable Devinder Kumar, an eyewitness.

“Police have made no efforts to trace the car. They say the registration number is of a scooter ,” said Colonel Gurdeep Singh Gill (retired), employer of Jyoti’s parents. 

Investigations are on: Police

Investigating officer sub-inspector Sewak Singh said: “The registration number noted down by eyewitnesses is that of a scooter. We are looking for more clues.” He, however, had no answer to why the rear view mirror of the car was not collected. “There are 250 cars belonging to that series and it will take time to scrutinise all vehicles,” he said. 



14-year-old accident victim battles for life 
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
A hit-and-run accident on the road separating Sectors 2 and 11 three days ago has shattered the life of 14-year-old Jyoti, who has slipped into coma and is battling for life.

A volleyball player and a bright student of Class VIII of government school, Sector 10, Jyoti is now confined to bed with doctors uncertain about her gaining consciousness.

Jyoti, a resident of Sector 2, was returning home from her tuition class on a bicycle this Monday when a Santro car hit her bicycle. Jyoti was accompanied by her friend who had a narrow escape. The UT police are yet to nab the driver of the car, even after having the registration number of the vehicle and two Punjab Police constables, posted with the Chief Minster’s security, are witness to the accident. The police have failed to collect crucial evidence from the spot.

While Jyoti suffered no external injury, she slipped into coma and was being been administered basic nursing care at GMSH-16.

“She is a bright student and extremely fond of studies. She is also a promising volleyball player. To see her lying motionless on the bed is painful. And the person responsible for her condition is roaming free,” said Jyoti’s mother Dani Devi.

“We are usertain about her future. Just because we are from poor family, the police are turning a blind eye to our complaint,” said Jyoti’s father. 


Year 2013 ender
Year wrapped up with crime thriller 
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 26
Controversies kept frequenting the town throughout the year. From the Ghaggar running amok to the a series of killings, it was an action-packed year. The only good thing that happened to the town was the formation of the Panchkula Municipal Corporation.

Jyoti murder case

Jyoti, a resident of Hoshiarpur, was found dead in Sector 21. Investigations revealed that Doon MLA Ram Kumar Chaudhary with the help of his aides had killed the girl as she was coming in his way. Chaudhary surrendered before the Panchkula court on January 8. Chaudhary and his aides are behind the bars.

Verdict in kidney scandal

In the infamous kidney scandal, the CBI court on March 22 convicted five accused and acquitted five others. Out of the five convicts, two were released after the court learnt that they had already undergone the required quantum of punishment under relevant sections.The court also directed them to pay Rs 10 lakh each to the three victims as compensation. The main accused, Dr Amit Kumar and Dr Upender, were awarded a seven-year imprisonment. The court had directed them to pay Rs 60.25 lakh and Rs 60.20 lakh, respectively, as fine. Two other convicts, Ghiyassudin and Manoj, were released after it was learnt that they had already undergone imprisonment of five years under the Transplantation of Human organs (TOHO) Act under which they were awarded four-and-a-half year imprisonment. The fifth convict, Shahid, was also sentenced to four-and-a-half years imprisonment under the TOHO Act. He has already undergone one-and-a-half years imprisonment.

Civic body poll

The elections were held on June 3. The Congress candidates won from 14 seats, the BJP from three seats while the INLD won from three seats. Twenty councillors were elected. The voter turnout was 65 per cent.

Insect-infested cashew nuts

Cashew nuts laden with cobwebs and insects were served to Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda at a function in Sector 1-A on June 26. The sample was sent for testing and the report confirmed the presence of 10 living and eight dead insects in the nuts.

Three former MC chiefs taste defeat

Former Municipal Council presidents, Ravinder Rawal, Seema Chaudhary and Tarun Bhandari, who had never lost the elections, lost the Panchkula MC elections.

Flash floods in Ghaggar

Birthday celebrations turned sour when six youths drowned in the Ghaggar on July 21. Two boys were rescued by villagers. The bodies were fished out after a four-day rescue operation. On the fateful day, 14 children were swept away in the strong currents, except six, all others were rescued.

Fungus-laden mid-day meals

Fungus-laden meals were being served to students of government schools. When a Judge and a councillor visited the schools, they were shocked to find out that the meals were being prepared in toilets. Later, the district administration constituted a committee for the regular inspection of schools.

Double murder in Pinjore

On August 1, the decomposed bodies of a woman and her seven-year-old daughter were found in the bed box at their residence in Charnia village near Pinjore. Police investigations revealed that the woman's husband, Suraj Bahadur, had hatched the killing. Extra-marital affair was the reason cited behind the crime. Bahadur has not been traced so far.

Verdict in the PC Jewellers loot case on Jan 28

In the PC Jewellers loot case, four members of the notorious Badri gang were held guilty by a local court while the other four were acquitted . There were nine accused in the case and the kingpin of the gang was Rajesh, alias Badri, who was recently killed in a police encounter. In January 2009, a gang of five robbers struck at the PC Jewellers showroom in Sector 14, Panchkula, and made away with gold and diamond jewellery worth ~2 crore. The robbers had posed as policemen. 

Jyoti’s father turns hostile

Buti Ram, the father of Jyoti, who was found murdered, turned hostile on December 23. Buti Ram, who had struggled to have the MLA arrested by moving the Punjab and Haryana High Court, said he did not know Chaudhary. 


Panchkula gets its first Mayor

On July 4, Upinder Kaur Ahluwalia was elected Mayor of the town. During the Mayoral elections, councillors owing allegiance to Kumari Selja and those owing allegiance to Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda stood opposite each other and fielded their candidates, despite being from the Congress. 



Only pomp, no show at PM’s function 
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mullanpur (Mohali), December 26
The December 30 stone-laying ceremony, where Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh is to show up, will be a low-key affair. To keep controversies at bay, no political rallies will be taken out on the day.

The Prime Minister will lay the stone of the Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre at Mullanpur.

Only 700 persons will attend the function. Earlier, the local authorities were asked to make arrangements for 10,000 persons as both the political outfits wanted to take out rallies.

Confirming the development, Congress leader and MP from the Anandpur constituency Ravneet Singh Bittu, said the decision was taken to avoid any untoward incident.

"It is an important project for us (Congress). Anything can happen during political rallies," said Bittu, who came to review the preparations this afternoon. The Congress had organised a function when the foundation stone of the PGI was laid at Sangrur in October this year. It was learnt that the party had not invited Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to the function which did not go down well with the ruling alliance. Around 500 VIPs and the other guests are expected to turn up.

Security arrangements

Around 2,200 police personnel from five districts of Punjab will be deputed. The function will start at 3 pm. Two temporary helipads have been constructed and an alternative route has been earmarked for the Prime Minister's convoy. "Around 300 policemen will be deployed on both the routes while the other 400 will guard the funnel area route," said a senior police officer. A team of the Special Protection Group (SPG) will arrive in the city tomorrow. Police rehearsals will begin tomorrow.


Roads leading to the venue are being recarpeted. Senior Punjab government officials, including SK Sandhu, principal secretary to Punjab Chief Minister, Vini Mahajan, principal secretary, health, AK Sinha, chief administrator, GMADA, Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu, Deputy Commissioner, Mohali, reviewed the arrangements. 

The project

The Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre will be constructed on 50 acres in Medicity-I near Firozepur Bangar village, New Chandigarh (Mullanpur). The state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment centre, the second in the country, will be run by the department of atomic energy through Tata Memorial Cancer Institute, Mumbai. In the first phase of the over ~400 crore project, a 100-bedded hospital will be set up. Later, it will have 400 beds. The work will be completed in three years. 



Civic body purchases nine more dumper placers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
The Municipal Corporation has added nine more dumper placers to the fleet of existing 44. The dumpers are used for lifting and transporting garbage. The new vehicles have been purchased for over Rs 81 lakh.

City Mayor Subhash Chawla today flagged off the new dumper placers from the MC office in Sector 17.

"Recently, the Municipal Corporation purchased 25 new dumper placers for Rs 2.25 crore. It also purchased 200 new garbage bins," the Mayor stated.

He said during his tenure, 34 dumper placers were purchased. Around 200 bins have been repaired and repainted. Around 554 bins are to be placed in various parts of the city. 

Filthy surroundings

The civic officials do not practise what they preach. They keep telling residents to keep the city clean, but when it comes to maintaining cleanliness in their office at Sector 17, they go the filthy way. 



Cong to announce candidate on Dec 28
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
The Congress will announce the name of the candidate for the Mayoral elections on December 28, a few hours before the filing of nominations. The party has called for a meeting of all Congress councillors at the party office in Sector 35 to decide on the candidate.

The meeting will be held at Congress Bhawan at 10 am and all councillors have been asked to attend the meeting. "All councillors will be asked their preferences," said a Congress councillor.

As the seat is reserved for an SC candidate, the names of HC Kalyan and Satish Kumar Kainth are being considered by the Congress high command. The last date for filing the nominations is December 28.

The meeting will be held in the presence of Harish Choudhary, Secretary, All-India Congress Committee (AICC).

The election to the posts of Mayor, Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor will be held on January 1.

The SAD-BJP alliance has only one candidate in the SC category. Arun Sood, BJP councillor, and Leader of Opposition, said they would be fielding Rajinder Kaur for the post of the Mayor while the candidates for the remaining posts would be decided on Friday. "We will be announce the candidates soon after the meeting and file the nominations on December 28," Sood stated.

The Balmiki Samaj held its general body meeting at Dhanas while the Muslim Samaj held a meeting at Burail and decided that the Congress should field Satish Kumar Kainth for the post of the Mayor. 



Is one year tenure of MC Mayor sufficient?

"The term of the Mayor should be of five years or a minimum of two and a half years so that a Mayor gets enough time to execute the projects planned by him during the course of his tenure. With the extension of term, the officers in the MC will also start taking the Mayor more seriously keeping in mind his long tenure."
Mukesh Bassi, Congress Councillor 

"I strongly believe that the Mayor's term should be of five years. Also, the Mayor should be elected via direct elections on the lines of Shimla MC. This will not only empower the voters to select the Mayor of their choice, but will also impart more power to the Mayor to formulate more policies."
Davesh Moudgil, BJP Councillor

"It has been a long pending demand of the councillors to extend the tenure of the Mayor to at least two and a half years now. When a councillor is elected as a Mayor, by the time he understands the system, his tenure comes to an end. To strengthen the functioning of the MC and to ensure that the projects are completed on time, the one-year tenure of the Mayor should be extended."
Harjinder Kaur, Former Mayor and SAD Councillor

"Electing a Mayor for just a year makes no sense as initial months of the tenure go in settling down in the office and understanding the functioning. In the last few months, the Mayor starts wrapping up his office, so technically, a Mayor gets not more then six months to concentrate on the development of the city."
Baljinder Singh, President Citizens' Association, Sector 21

"The Mayor's tenure should definitely be more than one year so that the Mayor gets sufficient time to complete the projects initiated by him before his tenure ends, which is often discontinued by his successor."  Subhash Chawla, Mayor and Congress Councillor

"I feel that the UT administration should extend the one year tenure of the Mayor, so that whosoever is elected gets time to propose and initiate new projects and ensure their completion. Longer tenure would also ensure accountability of the Mayor to the citizens."
Surinder Sharma, President, Residents' Welfare Assn, Sector 15



e-Sampark Centre has a surprise visitor
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
Union Information and Broadcasting Minister and Member of Parliament (MP) from Ludhiana, Manish Tewari, was in the city to get his Aadhaar card issued and to renew his driving license today.

The staff in Sector 17 E-Sampark Centre was surprised to see Union Minister Manish Tewari at their office.

The UT Treasury officer, Rajiv Tewari, helped Manish Tewari with the process of getting the card issued and renewing his driver license from the RLA office in Sector 17. Manish Tiwari said his license had expired so he had come to apply for the renewal of his license.

“Don’t see politics in everything,” said Tewari.

Sources revealed that after the Railgate scam, in which the CBI had caught local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal’s nephew, many senior leaders of the Congress were eyeing for the ticket from Chandigarh seat. If sources are to be believed, due to this very reason, activities of many senior Congress leaders including Kapil Sibbal, Ambika Soni and Manish Tewari, have suddenly increased in the city.



Training camp inaugurated
Our Correspondent

Mohali, December 26
A regional training camp of the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) was inaugurated here today.

The deputy director-general and regional head, NSSO (FOD), Punjab, Inderjeet Singh, while inaugurating the camp, said sample surveys of the Central Government were being conducted by the NSSO to collect socio-economic data on various subjects. The regional training camp will conclude on December 28.

The deputy director-general and regional head urged the public to provide fair information to the investigators of the NSSO, as this would be used for statistical purposes and policy formulation. The information gathered would be kept confidential, said Singh, while inaugurating the camp. 



2 killed in Zirakpur car crash 
Tribune News Servi

Mohali, December 26
Two persons, both in their thirties, were killed after the car they were travelling in hit the railing of the Panchkula-Zirakpur flyover in Dhakoli late on Wednesday night.

The deceased were identified as 39-year-old Himanshu Tyagi, a resident of Sector 20, Panchkula, and 36-year-old Manoj Malik of Sector 12 A, Panchkula.

Eyewitnesses said after hitting the railing, the car flung into the air and turned turtle on the service road. The car was being driven by Manoj.

Station house officer of the Zirakpur police station inspector Tarlochan Singh said Himanshu was rushed to Alchemist Hospital while Manoj was taken to the GMCH-32. “Both the victims succumbed to their injuries on way  to hospitals,” said the SHO.

Manoj and Himanshu were going to Zirakpur in their i20 car ( HR-03-M-7514), after dropping the Manoj’s wife at the Chandigarh railway station.

“The car was being driven at a high speed when it hit the railing of the flyover near Hotel Palm Dale. The victims were stuck in the car and were pulled out with difficulty,” said the police.

The bodies were handed over to the families after post-mortem at the Dera Bassi hospital.

Manoj is survived by his wife and a four-year-old son, while Himanshu is survived by his wife and two minor daughters.

Manoj’s wife Shalu had never thought that she would never be able to see her husband again when she boarded train to Alwar. God has cracked a cruel joke on her and their four-year-old son.

Manoj and Himanshu knew each other for the past 20 years. They were into the same business and they were seen together most of the times. Nobody would have ever thought that they would even die together, said a relative of Manoj. 



What’s on


PLAY: A play 'Ji Aaya Sahib' by Saadat Hasan Manto and Sukhiya, written by Munshi Prem Chand, will be staged at Tagore Theatre, Sector 18, at 6.30 pm.

APNI MANDI: Apni Mandi will be held at Mandi ground in Sector 46.

For "WHAT'S ON" please send email to whatson4ct@gmail.com



Teachers hold black ribbon protest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 26
With black ribbons tied on their mouths, 160 computer teachers and data entry operators gathered at the Sector 16/17 light point in front of the Rose Garden to protest against the UT Education Department.

For the past several days, the teachers are using different ways to make their voices heard. Today, they observed the protest with black ribbons tied on their mouths. They also observed a daylong fast.

After the protest at the Sector 16/17 light point, the teachers moved to the Masjid Ground in Sector 20 where they raised slogans against the department.

Hike in salary and the regularisation of their service according to the Punjab Rules were among their main demands.

The teachers said they were suffering from mental trauma since their contracts were being renewed every two months. The Class-IV employees were better than us in terms of monthly emoluments.

“Even after working for five years, we are not paid more than Rs 11,000-Rs 12,000 per month. Other teachers working on a contractual basis in the department are being paid more than Rs 30,000,” said a computer teacher.

The teachers also said they would continue their protest till the time the department did not increase our salary and assure us of our regularisation. They would also send their list of issues to the PM office by post.

Tomorrow, the teachers have planned to hold a rally from the Matka Chowk to the Governor House.



PU mulls over rotation policy

Chandigarh, December 26
Panjab University is going to explore the possibility of having rotation in the appointment of coordinators and directors of the departments.

On the demand made by PUTA, PU Vice-Chancellor Arun Kumar Grover gave the assurance to do so and hoped that there was no affect on the ranking of the university by adopting this system.

During a meeting with PUTA president Devinder Singh today, the Vice-Chancellor also assured them that the issue of changing the retirement age of the teachers and professors to June 30 or December 31 rather than in the month in which it was due as per the record would also be tabled in the coming Syndicate meeting for consideration.

Another issue that would be tabled in the Syndicate meeting was the implementation of the Annual Performance Index (API) second amendment for approval, the VC said.

PUTA representative also demanded that there should be a post of senior professors in the university, besides assistant, associate and professors. Reacting to it, the VC told them that a clarification on the issue had already been sought from the UGC. After their response, action would be taken on it accordingly.

Another demand for filling 93 posts of teachers in various departments was also accepted by the VC. He told the members that by March 31, 2014, maximum posts would be filled by the suitable candidates. Similarly, the career advance scheme of the dental institute would also be implemented by March 2014, but after the consent of the Syndicate. — TNS



Critical thinking fair at Vivek High School today

Chandigarh, December 26
Vivek High School, Sector 38, will organise a critical thinking fair on its school premises tomorrow from 9 am to 1 pm.

At the fair, parents and guests will witness presentations and hands-on activities by students displaying the critical thinking methodology of learning, which has been in practice at the school since 2003. Critical thinking is a methodology, which encourages the students to look at various options and arrive at a plausible answer. It makes them think out of the box and be open-minded, analytical and respectful of other’s viewpoints.

School officials said critical thinking and problem solving being crucial for 21st century learner skills, this fest would showcase how these could be integrated into the curriculum and used to engage students collaboratively across subject discipline. — TNS



Online admission process at UIAMS

Chandigarh, December 26
From the next session, there will be online admission process for the MBA sectoral programme at the University Institute of Applied Management Sciences (UIAMS).

Panjab University Vice-Chancellor Professor AK Grover launched the online admission process today.

The UIAMS runs MBA sectoral programme in six streams (MBA-banking and insurance management, MBA-retail management, MBA-IT and telecommunications management, MBA-infrastructural management, MBA-pharmaceutical management and MBA-hospital management).

Form, prospectus and other details are available on the website http://met.puchd.ac.in/.

The last date for filling the form online is February 17, 2014. The management entrance test (MET) would be conducted on March 15, 2014, at the Chandigarh and Ludhiana centres. Enquiries regarding the test can be addressed at e-mail id met@pu.ac.in.

PU Dean University Instructions and Registrar Professor AK Bhandari, Computer Centre Director Professor Tankeshwar Kumar and faculty members of the UIAMS were present on the occasion. — TNS



From schools

Founder’s day celebrations

Three-day founder’s day celebrations of Dikshant International School, Zirakpur, began Students during the Mars exhibition at the Indradhanush Auditorium in Sector 5, Panchkula, on Thursday. Tribune Photo: Nitin Mittal on Thursday with the inauguration of a Mars exhibition by NK Sharma, Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Government of Punjab, at Indradhanush Auditorium, Sector 5, Panchkula. The exhibition had 13 models on display with information and posters displaying all information about the important missions of Mars, Mars reconnaissance orbiter, Mars climate orbiter, etc. Models and information about Mars pathfinder, Mars exploration rovers, Mars science laboratory etc, were also displayed.

Students during the Mars exhibition at the Indradhanush Auditorium in Sector 5, Panchkula, on Thursday. Tribune Photo: Nitin Mittal

Annual sports fest

Students of St Joan’s Public School, Zirakpur, participated enthusiastically in the annual sports fest. The programme commenced with a prayer, followed by the march past and the torch-bearing ceremony. Extraordinary skills were displayed by the students of Kindergarten.

Christmas celebrated

Tiny tots of ACNP, Zirakpur, celebrated Christmas. Christmas tree was decorated on the occasion. Santa Claus distributed sweets and gifts among the children.

Students sing carols

Christmas was celebrated at Bachpan School, Naya Gaon, with a lot of fanfare. Children came to the school dressed in red and white clothes and Santa outfits for the celebrations. The festival was celebrated with great joy, fervour and enthusiasm. All children sang Christmas carols and shared cakes, candies and gifts to celebrate the festival.

Special assembly

A special assembly was held at New India Senior Secondary School, Sector 15, Panchkula, to mark Christmas celebrations. Carols were sung by the students with joy and fervour. A play, based on humanity depicted the message of spreading love and peace, was enacted by the middle classes. Kindergarten students sung carols with great zeal.

Educational trip

Students of Satluj Public School, Panchkula, were given an opportunity to explore Kurukshetra during an educational trip there. Their first stop was the Brahmasarovar where students were educated about the great value of the place and its importance in relation to the Mahabharata. Then, the students went to the Panorama where they explored scientific illusions.

Christmas tree decorated

Students of Green Castle Public School, Sector 47, celebrated Christmas with a lot of fanfare. The whole campus and the Christmas tree were decorated with balloons, bells, gifts and stars. The main motto behind the celebration was to inculcate the feeling of love, brotherhood and happiness. The students sang carols and made beautiful cards.

Students told to follow traffic rules

A NSS special camp concluded at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 20, Chandigarh. During the camp, traffic police chief marshal Gurnam Singh, head constable Deshraj, Sunil Kumar and Paramvir Singh organised the workshop. They made the NSS volunteers aware of road safety rules, road signs and markings. The students were told to follow traffic rules.

Visit to Mother Teresa Charitable Home

Members of the interact club of Guru Nanak Public School, Sector 36, Chandigarh, visited the Mother Teresa Charitable Home, Chandigarh. It was a joyful moment for the inmates when all students of the school interacted with them. The students accompanied by their teachers distributed woollen caps and mufflers as Christmas gifts.

Students visit Snehalaya

Students and teachers of DAV Model School, Sector 15-A, Chandigarh, visited Snehalaya, a home for destitute children, in the city. The teachers and students interacted with the staff and children living in the institute. Snehalaya is a home for orphans, missing children, abandoned and destitute children. — TNS



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