C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


City gets automated paid parking
  MC overlooks violations during inauguration at Empire Store, Sahib Singh parking lots in Sec 17 
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Ignoring terms and conditions laid down by the municipal corporation (MC) for the parking contractors, the Mayor today inaugurated the city’s first automated paid parking lots in Sector 17. At the time of the inauguration, parking attendants were not wearing uniforms, complaint box was missing from the parking lots and CCTV cameras were not functional. 

The Empire Store and Sahib Singh automatic parking lots in Sector 17 began functioning today. Mayor Subhash Chawla in the presence of MC Commissioner VP Singh inaugurated the Empire Store parking lot. Other MC officials, including Sunil Bhatia Additional Commissioner, Rajiv Gupta, Joint Commissioner, were also present on the occasion.

The MC authorities during the inauguration failed to ensure that the terms and conditions laid down to operate the parking lots were fulfilled. The parking staff were not wearing uniforms for which the parking contractor could be fined Rs 500.

The terms and conditions for parking contractors clearly states the presence of one person at 50 meters, however, not even a single parking employee was found inside the parking lot to ensure proper parking of vehicles. 

The white line to demarcate the parking space for each car which ensures systematic parking was also missing. The MC is supposed to paint the road to demarcate the area for parking of the vehicles. Sunil Bhatia, Additional Commissioner, MC, when contacted stated “Just 15 days ago the auction took place and the contractors will need sometime to settle down. However, we will ensure that all the norms laid down for operating a paid parking lot are strictly followed. We will see to it that the terms and conditions are followed. Surprise checks will be conducted at the parking lots and defaulters will be penalised”, he said.



Defacement of city
154 violators to face music
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Mulling action against the people defacing the city, the municipal corporation (MC) has written to the Chandigarh Police to provide them with details of violators identified by the MC who have pasted advertisements along with mobile numbers at public places. The MC has asked the police to provide them with the addresses of the defaulters against whom action can be taken.

After conducting a surve, the MC has prepared a list of 154 violators who have pasted advertisements at public places. As many as 110 have only mentioned their mobile numbers on advertisements.

MC Joint Commissioner Rajiv Gupta said to establish the identities and addresses of the violators, the MC had written to the DSP Cyber Cell for providing them with details of the violators. “Once we get the addresses from them, we will be sending a notice to all defaulters asking them to pay a fine ”, Gupta stated. Sources stated that the police would be taking the details of the mobile numbers from the service providers. The Joint Commissioner further said that it had been presumed that the poster or signboard had been put up for the past six months and the violators would be fined for six months depending upon the size of the advertisements.

The sources said the violators on failing to deposit the fine would be served a legal notice. “The defaulters will not be let off easily, as they will have to pay the fine. The move will deter the others from violating the norms”, officials said. The defacement has been recorded at bus stops, market corridors and parking lots. The hoardings and posters are in violation of the West Bengal Defacement of Property Act, 1976, and the Chandigarh Advertisement Control Order, 1954.



Money can buy you ‘likes’ on FB
Business of ‘likes’, on Facebook, ‘followers’ on twitter growing in tricity
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Now, anybody can easily buy “likes” for his/her Facebook profile and for that one doesn’t need a lot of money. Former Union Railways Minister and local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal and former city MP and senior BJP leader Satya Pal Jain had also complained to the UT police to inquire into the large number of “likes” on their Facebook pages.

Hundreds of websites, including a few based in India, promise to give as many ‘likes’ on Facebook or “followers” on Twitter for $25 to $250. The digital marketing business of providing “likes” — genuine and fake — is also growing in the tricity.

This correspondent spoke to some of the digital marketing companies and people in the tricity who are in the business of providing “likes” and “followers”. In the tricity, on making the payment between Rs 15,00 and Rs 25,00 one can get 1,000 “likes” within one week.

Sandeep Sharma (name changed), who runs his digital marketing company in the city, said that there was nothing wrong in running such a business. As per the client’s demand, he would ask his team members to create 1,000 profiles per person. They were also paid decently. They also had links with foreign-based websites that helped them. It was a growing business, he added.

Another businessman, who runs his company from Mohali, said that they dealt in genuine and fake “likes”. Before the deal was through, they clarified everything to the customer. A majority of customers wanted quick results, so they provided “likes” from the ‘bank of profiles’, created by their team members, he added.

Amit Bansal, who is a marketing-strategy expert, said that a number of “likes” on the Facebook page instantly attracted a visitor. For example, if one leader had only 1,00 “likes” on his page and the other had 10,000 likes then a new visitor would definitely feel that the leader who had 10,000 likes was more popular, he added.

A few days ago, the “likes” on the Facebook page of Chandigarh BJP president Sanjay Tandon had increased by over 9,000 in one day, with most of these reportedly being from Istanbul. Similarly, fan base of senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan’s Facebook page was also found in Istanbul.



District courts complex
Illegal chambers come up overnight, later demolished 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
High drama was witnessed in the district courts complex in Sector 43 today when advocates created a hue and cry over the alleged illegal construction of some chambers overnight by members of the Construction Committee. The chambers blocking the entrance and occupying the vacant space in the building were then demolished by the protesting group of advocates after a ruckus was created. The incident has brought the District Bar Association (DBA) and the Construction Committee in the dock for violating the site plan and constructing chambers without approval.

While a chamber was being constructed at the entry to the chambers block in front of Chamber 21, another chamber was being constructed at the entry to the chambers block towards the service block, to provide a chamber for stenographers and typists.

Earlier, the Construction Committee had also demolished 10 women toilets in the building and constructed chambers in its place with a plan to auction these. A petition has already been filed seeking stay on the construction of the chambers in the space allocated in the approved plan for toilets on each floor. The petition is likely to come up for hearing on January 4, 2014.

One of the agitated advocates who got the illegal chambers demolished this morning said that there was an allocation of 442 chambers as per the site plan and not a single chamber could be constructed beyond this number.

“I was shocked to find that a chamber had been constructed opposite mine overnight and it was blocking the entrance. They have also made chambers in the place of women toilets and also in the vacant space which is required, otherwise, it will pose as a fire safety hazard. We got the illegal structures removed this morning,” said advocate GS Rangi.

Chairman of the Construction Committee SPS Bhullar said that the chambers were constructed after a prior approval at the meeting of the house in the first week of December and nothing had been constructed illegally.

This was contradicted by the advocates who said no prior approval was ever taken and the DBA was blatantly violating the site plan. 


Nature walk
Environmentalist makes people aware of unique trees at Rose Garden
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Chandigarh’s pride Rose Garden is not only famous for its priceless roses but also it houses many exotic and rare spices of trees, which many are not aware of.

This was the major essence of the first-of-its-kind “nature walk”, held this afternoon at the Rose Garden in Sector 16, here. Delhi-based environmentalist Kavita Prakash showed several exotic and unique trees to the city residents during the walk here at the garden.

Speaking to The Tribune, Kavita, whose parents reside in Chandigarh, said: “The city has got such a vast environmental heritage, but there is a little awareness among people about it. The purpose of this nature walk was to introduce the city residents to some of the unique trees at the Rose Garden here”.

“The idea behind this nature walk was to sensitise the people to their immediate environment and create a bond so that people’s participation towards environment conversation can be increased,” said Kavita, who keeps organising such events in Delhi. She has so far organised 11 such walks in several areas, including Lodhi Garden in Delhi, and plans to expedite her efforts in Chandigarh, where she has spent her early days.

Today, she made the residents aware of trees like Spanish mahogany, which is also the national tree of Spain, Caribbean trumpet tree, Italian cypress tree, Siala trees, Hallock family trees, multi-hued eucalyptus tree and many more.

According to her, there are over 40 species of trees in the Rose Garden, which are very rare and famous world over. Many of the trees are over 100 years old. But, most of these trees are not labelled. There should be proper labelling and information about these trees, which will only add up to the existing botanic value of the Rose Garden, which anyway is the Asia’s biggest botanic garden.

The walk that was initially planed for one hour, stretched to over 2 hours as the residents were so engrossed in getting knowledge of the trees at the Rose Garden. Over 40 people joined the nature walk.

According to Kavita, the city has so much to offer as far as its environmental heritage is concerned, but little is being officially classified and there is a lack of public interest, too.

“The concept of the nature walk is very important to create bondage between human beings and nature so that both start taking care of each other,” she said.



City without no-horn site

Chandigarh, December 27
An RTI application has revealed that the Chandigarh police have not designated any site in the city as a ‘no horn’ site. This is despite various rules that are applicable to Chandigarh and mentioned on the Chandigarh Traffic Police website as well.

The information has been obtained by a Sector 21 resident, Gaurav Bansal, who has also submitted a representation to the High Court about the matter.

As per rules, the district magistrate may, by a notification published in the official gazette or in one or more newspapers in circulation in the area, prohibit the use by drivers of motor vehicles of any horn or any other device for giving audible warning in any area during such hours as may be specified by him in the notification. Provided that when the District Magistrate prohibits the use of any horning or other device for giving audible warning during certain specified hours, he should ‘cause’ a suitable notice in English and Hindi languages to be affixed below the traffic sign setting forth the hours within which such use is prohibited. — TNS



BJP-SAD alliance announces candidates for Mayoral poll

Chandigarh, December 27
The BJP-SAD alliance today announced its candidates for the upcoming Mayoral polls at the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh.

While the name of BJP councillor Rajinder Kaur was already cleared for the post of Mayor, both the parties in a meeting held at the BJP office in Sector 33 decided to field BJP councillor Heera Negi for the post of Senior Deputy Mayor and BJP councillor Davesh Moudgil for the post of Deputy Mayor.

While the Congress is yet to declare its candidates for the three posts, sources in the party said the name of HC Kalyan was expected to be cleared for the post of Mayor and the names of Sat Parkash Aggarwal and Sheela Phool Singh for the post of Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor. The Lav Kush Sewa Dal, Bhartiya Valmiki Dharma Society, Pawan Satya and various other societies have decided to support HC Kalyan for the post of Mayor. The last date for filling nominations is December 28. — TNS



Power cut hits Kharar residents
Our Correspondent

Mohali, December 27
Kharar and the surrounding areas remained without power for most of the day today, putting residents to a lot of inconvenience. The disruption in the power also hit the supply of water. The residents were caught unawares as water had not been stored by most of them because of the winter months.

Arun Sharma, a resident of Gillco Heights, said power supply got disrupted around 8 am today and was only restored around 8.30 pm. He said just as the residents heaved a sigh of relief, the power supply again went off.

He said when complaints in this regard were made, employees of Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) failed to give a satisfactory answer. Even last Friday, the power supply was shut down around 9 am and was restored only at 5.30 pm or so.

Charanjit Kaur, another resident of Kharar, said the department concerned could not run tube wells in the absence of power, which adversely affected the supply of water.

She said she could do small chores at home only because she had stored some water. The family faced problems because the overhead tanks had gone dry.



Cars or chaos in parking lots?
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Soon after the inauguration of the automatic paid parking lots in Sector 17, chaos became the order of the day. The contractor concerned should make it a point to have a list of the number of vehicles parked inside the parking lot. He should also assess overcrowding.
Vehicles parked haphazardly in the Empire Store parking lot

Vehicles parked haphazardly in the Empire Store parking lot; and (below) an attendant defies orders by not wearing uniform at Sector 17 in Chandigarh. Tribune photos: S Chandan 

an attendant defies orders by not wearing uniform at Sector 17 in Chandigarh.

Today, haphazardly parked vehicles were seen in the lots, with the contractor sitting mum. He let the number of vehicles exceed the space available in the parking lots.

As per the MC officials, 250 two-wheelers and four-wheelers are allowed to park in the Empire Store parking. But there is no limit on the number of vehicles entering the lot.

A visitor, who parked his car there, said at the entrance, there should be board displaying the availability of space.

These parking lots have computer-operated boom barriers that open and close automatically. The barrier will open after the parking slip is generated from a machine installed at the entry and will close after the vehicle drives past. The commuters are supposed to pay the parking charges according to the hours of parking. Interestingly, a few hours after the inauguration, the parking attendants were charging money at the entry point only and the boom barriers that are supposed to open and close every time a vehicle passes, were left open.

At the entry point, no information board has been installed to inform commuters about the parking facility and fee.

Parking fee

For the first four hours residents will have to pay ~2 for a two-wheeler and ~5 for a four-wheeler. After four hours, they will be charged ~2 and ~5 per hour.

As per norms, if the automatic system develops any snag, four-wheelers will be flatly charged ~5 and ~2. 



Most difficult challenge was to discipline House: Mayor
As the one-year term of city Mayor Subhash Chawla ends on December 31, Tribune Reporter Amit Sharma speaks to the first citizen on his achievements, failures and the challenges that he faced during his tenure. 

Subhash Chawla What was the toughest challenge you have faced during your tenure?

I think controlling the BJP councillors and running the house smoothly was the toughest challenge for me.

What was the reason behind adjourning General House meetings a number of times?

The deliberate attacks launched by the opposition councillors and their adamant attitude led to the adjournment of the meetings. I just wanted to run the house smoothly.

Why was no new major project initiated during your tenure?

The civic body has to carry out development works. During my tenure, four dispensaries for the southern sectors got a green signal. A methane gas plant is also in the pipeline. Tenders for 22 tubewells have been floated and roads have been recarpeted.

The rift between you and the councillors came to the fore. What do you have to say?

My fellow councillors were only expressing resentment over some issues which were later sorted out. Everything is fine now. 



hit-and-run case
Residents, NGO demand strict action against driver
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Residents and chairman of ArriveSafe, an NGO, Harman Sidhu today held a silent protest on the road separating Sectors 2 and 11 where 14-year-old Jyoti, a promising student, was hit by a speeding car.

The accused instead of taking the victim to the hospital ran away. Harman Singh Sidhu demanded that the accused should be booked under Section 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others. Whoever causes grievous hurt to any person by doing any act or negligently as to endanger human life, or the personal safety of others, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine which may extend to Rs 1,000 or with both) of the IPC and Section 134 of the MVA (the driver instead of informing the authorities or providing medical attention chose to run away).

The NGO demanded that the family of the girl should come forward. Those found shielding the accused should also be booked. The NGO also appealed to the authorities to take strict action against the culprit. The UT police have stepped up efforts to trace the accused in the case. A Class VIII student of Government Model School in Sector 10, Jyoti was returning home when she was hit by the speeding car.

Woman booked

The police have booked an unidentified woman for abandoning her newborn. The accused had given birth to a baby boy at Government Medical Hospital and College in Sector 32 a few days ago. The mother had fled the hospital leaving behind the child. The accused had given wrong personal information at the hospital, added the police. A case of concealment of birth by secret disposal of dead body (Section 318) under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) has been registered against the accused at the Sector 34 police station. 



New Year’s Eve: Security up
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
With New Year’s Eve around the corner, around 2,000 police officials from various units of Chandigarh Police will be deputed for the forthcoming celebrations, including 15 DSPs and 34 inspectors.

This was decided in a meeting attended by managers and general managers of all prominent hotels, clubs, restaurants, malls etc along with police officials. During the meeting, all organisers were apprised of the arrangements to be made and the security measures and precautions to be taken by them at and around their establishments on December 31.

Security measures

* Emphasis was laid on drunken driving. Managers were informed that strict nakas would be put across to check drunken driving and they were encouraged to advise the customers not to indulge in any nefarious activities. Also, managers were advised to assist the customers in ensuring safe driving with adequate arrangements made in this regard, which may include prior arrangement of cab/taxis, at least
one sober companion and at last police help by dialing 100.

*If any female found drunk in front of hotels, restaurants, bars or pubs, owners/managers have been directed to hire cabs/taxis in advance to drop them at their destinations safely.

*During the meeting, owners/managers of hotels, restaurants, bars and pubs, were directed to take an identification proof of customers to ensure safety measures.

* The SSP strongly affirmed that no sale of liquor to a person below the age of 25 years should be allowed. In this regard, owners were directed to install/display sign board at a visible point on the entry of their establishment.

* Timing of functions should be strictly maintained as permitted by the Office of District Magistrate, UT.

* In case the programme is organised in an open ground, the venue of the function should be properly barricaded, well lit and sound limit and timing should be adhered to.

* The safety of a woman will be the top-most priority of the owners/managers. The owners of the establishments were advised to make arrangements for safe passage and dispersal of guests especially woman, apart from the arrangements made by the police.

* CCTV cameras are mandatory to be installed at the entry/ exit points and parking areas of the venue. A cameraman for making video should be available at all the venues for the proper coverage of the programme.

* If any celebrity/VIP comes to attend the function, the owners/managers of establishments will inform the DSPs concerned as well as SHOs and police officials.

* It was directed that a PCR would ensure, in their respective jurisdiction, that wine shops/ahatas will be closed by 11 pm as per the legal guidelines. A citizen can take help of local police by informing them if he/she finds non-compliance of the rule.

* The owners have been advised to employ additional staff to assist them in smooth occurrence of the year-end event, which may include female bouncers, private security guards, ushers at the parking area, etc.



3-day Alankar Theatre Fest ends on a high note
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
The three-day Alankar Theatre Fest concluded today with the staging of two plays, namely ‘Ji Aaya Sahib’, written by Saadat Hasan Manto, and ‘Sukhiya’, written by Munshi Prem Chand, here at the Tagore Theatre in Sector 18.

The play ‘Ji Aaya Sahib’ depicted the issue of child labour portraying the story of a 10-year-old child ‘Kasim’ who tirelessly worked at the home of an inspector without getting time to take rest.

And one day, he cuts his finger with a knife and because of the wound he finally gets two days for resting.

Now, whenever, the workload exceeded, he searched some sharp thing to cut his finger just to get rest. But one day, he cuts his finger deeply enough but unfortunately he loses his job and even his hand.

The play ended showing the cruel face of child labour prevalent in our society.



Now, BJP leader lodges complaint against surging ‘likes’ on Facebook
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Joining the bandwagon, senior BJP leader Satya Pal Jain has lodged a complaint with the police alleging a sudden surge in ‘likes’ on Facebook. After the local Congress MP, Pawan Kumar Bansal, former MP and senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, Satya Pal Jain, has lodged a complaint with the police over sudden surge of ‘likes’ on his Facebook pages.

The BJP leader, Harmohan Dhawan, too has approached police with a similar complaint here.

In a complaint sent to the UT Inspector General of Police (IGP), Dhawan stated, “I had last opened my Facebook account on July 18. There had been a gradual increase in the number of likes on my page. About three or four days ago, when I opened the account, there was a sudden increase of about 5,000 likes. It looks like some mischievous person has deliberately done this.”

He added, “To ensure that the miscreant does not further fiddle with my page, I have blocked my account for the time being.”

The local BJP leader has requested the police to get the matter investigated and take necessary action at the earliest. 



Consumer law guide released for students
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 27
Chaman Lal DAV School, Sector 11, Panchkula, released a Consumer Law Guide, to increase consumer awareness amongst students and their families on the occasion of its annual function.

Justice (retd) AL Bahri released the booklet written by Pankaj Chandgothia, advocate and director of Interact Club, at a function held in Inderdhanush Auditorium. Justice Bahri lauded the school students on their efforts to spread legal literacy.

Chandgothia said consumer law is applied to every citizen, whether old or young, and the guide was an attempt to arise consciousness regarding consumer rights in school students.



biz news
Offices for tax collection to remain open on weekend

Under Voluntary Compliance Encouragement Scheme’s Section 107 (1) of the Finance Act, 2013, the last date for filing declaration service tax is on or before December 31, 2013.

In order to enable trade and industry to file declarations well in time before December 31, 2013, and also to avoid last minute rush, all the offices handling service tax will remain open on Saturday and Sunday. — TNS



DC seeks flexible pricing of entry tickets in multiplexes 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
The UT Deputy Commissioner, Mohammed Shayin, has written a letter to the UT finance department, requesting it to switch over to flexible pricing of entry tickets in city multiplexes.

The officials want that the uniform pricing of the tickets should be done away with on the lines of Punjab and Haryana.

The final decision on the proposal will be taken by the UT Administration.

In July this year, the Administration had increased the rates of movie tickets in multiplexes from 15 to 20 per cent in different categories.

The letter written by the Deputy Commissioner, who is also the licensing authority, stated: "The idea of flexible pricing for different movies depending upon the gene and length of the movie on a weekly basis is good. Owners of the multiplexes will have to inform the licensing authority as well as excise and taxation department about the same in advance. They should also get the new rates published in newspapers. It will have to be ensured that the rates charged from customers are the same which are notified by the cinema owners for a particular week."

The letter was forwarded after the owners of multiplexes submitted a representation. There are six multiplexes, Elante Mall, Centra Mall, City Emporio, Fun Republic, Piccadily and DT Mall.

The letter read: "It is requested that the desirability of switching over from uniform pricing to flexible pricing in respect of entry tickets/admission rates in cinemas in the UT may be considered and amendment to the scheme be made accordingly."



Chandigarh MC should upgrade its website

It seems that the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has no time to upgrade its website. The outdated information on the website is misguiding residents of Chandigarh. Interestingly, the tenure of Mayor Subhash Chawla is to be completed in five days, but his message for the residents is yet to be uploaded. There is no information about the ongoing projects and recently passed projects in the MC meetings. The corporation should ask the IT Department of the corporation to redesign the website with timely updates. Today, people of all ages are living hi-tech life with latest gadgets but the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has not adopted the latest technology to improve its website. Hope with the best, in 2014 the Municipal Corporation should upgrade the information with its new Mayor’s message on the website.

Karan Bansal, Chandigarh

Sector 20 of Panchkula needs development

Panchkula’s Sector 20 and the adjoining Peer Muchhala area of Zirakpur have some 30,000 dwelling units. With the increasing population, this mayoral sector needs the following on priority. There are some important points to be highlighted. Till the underpass linking Sectors 20/21 dividing road for the direct movement of vehicular traffic coming from the Housing Board Chowk, Mani Majra side, is laid, an ad hoc opening (may be permanent to save on time and money for laying the underpass) with traffic lights must be provided at the T-Junction. Blind alley (road) near GH 105 should be opened and linked to the road beside GH 7A and 8A to ease traffic congestion near the overhead bridge, which is the sole exit from the sector. Petrol pump at the site earmarked for it; urgent need of a fire station in view of hundreds of high-rise buildings established in the area; and re-carpeting of roads, along with the proper drainage system. The dispensary of the area needs to be upgraded with proper pathological test laboratory. The sector is also facing stray dog and cattle menace. The CTU should run the local bus services on this route. The Panchkula Administration should do the needful for the residents of Sector 20.

Lalit Bhardwaj, Panchkula



Computer teachers hold protest
Tribune News Service

Computer teachers and data entry operators gather to hold a protest at Sector 9, Chandigarh, on Friday.
Computer teachers and data entry operators gather to hold a protest at Sector 9, Chandigarh, on Friday. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, December 27
More than 150 computer teachers protested at Sector 9 in front of Citco Petrol Pump today. The teachers planned to march towards the Governor Shivraj Patil’s house. However, the police stopped them. Later on, with the consensus of the police authorities, five teachers went in a police vehicle to Governor’s house where they met with under secretary to the Governor Madan Lal Garg.

They handed over their memorandum demanding hike in salary and implementing Punjab Government’s rules for regularisation of computer teachers working in government schools.

UT Cadre Educational Employee Union president Swarn Singh Kamboj and UT Subordinate Services Federation President Ranjit Hans and Chief Patron Raghuveer Singh Sandhu were among others present in the protest.

The teachers are also planning to meet the Prime Minister, during his visit to city on December 30.



Signature campaign for women’s safety in city
Tribune News Service

Students of DAV-15, Chandigarh, sign during a signature campaign on women safety
Students of DAV-15, Chandigarh, sign during a signature campaign on women safety. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, December 27
The ABVP and DAV School, Sector 15, Chandigarh, today organised a signature campaign on the school premises for women safety.

It was organised under the leadership of Dr Rakesh Sachdeva, principal of DAV School, and Dinesh Chauhan, organising secretary, ABVP. Around 200 students gave their comments about women safety in the tricity.

Talking to the media, Dinesh Chauhan said women security was one of the biggest issues in the country.



SGGS-26 holds science camp
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Sri Guru Gobind Singh College, Sec 26, Chandigarh, organised “INSPIRE” (Information in Science Pursuit For Inspired Research), a science internship camp, for class XI students, sponsored by Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.

The camp was inaugurated by Prof PK Ahluwalia from Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla. Prof MS Marwaha, principal, SGGS College, extended a warm welcome to all the luminaries present there and also encouraged the participating students in his welcome address.

He also applauded the significance of such events for creating critical human resource pool for strengthening the base. 



Desh Bhagat University celebrates green Christmas 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Desh Bhagat University in collaboration with Hara Punjab Khara Samaj celebrated green Christmas in which the foreign students as well as members of teaching and non-teaching staff participated with full zeal and fervour.

Chancellor, Desh Bhagat University, Dr Zora Singh cut the cake and everyone wished Merry Christmas to one another by distributing plants. Dr Zora Singh highlighted the life and teachings of Jesus Christ and told everyone to follow his teachings and lead pious lives. He added that saplings and plants would make great gifts for Christmas and tree-planting could be a fun, festive & meaningful way to spend the holidays.

Christmas trees were decorated by the students. Students sang melodious carols. A colorful cultural programme was also arranged on this occasion which included Bhangra, Giddha, Songs, Solo Dance and Fancy Dress competition. Tejinder Kaur, pro-chancellor, Desh Bhagat University, conveyed her wishes on the occasion, she said “Lord Jesus Christ was a symbol of love and peace, spreading happiness and mitigating the sufferings of others.”

She said the basic idea behind celebrating green Christmas was to create awareness among the students about the importance of trees in our life.



Students start training programme for poor women
Tribune News Service

Students of The Gurukul at the Nature Interpretation Park of Sukhana Lake in Chandigarh.
Students of The Gurukul at the Nature Interpretation Park of Sukhana Lake in Chandigarh. A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, December 27
With the aim to transform lives and provide sustainable business solution to underprivileged communities, Dr SS Bhatnagar, UICET, a team of 55 students has come up with a project called ‘Phulkari’. Under this project the ladies of the colony and slum areas will be trained in ‘Phulkari’ by the experts to earn their livelihood. The project will start on January 1, 2014.

Dr SS Bhatnagar has adopted this cause in order to provide ladies of below poverty line a chance by directly linking them to the market and eliminating the role of middlemen. Also, in order to promote Phulkari, Enactus team aims to provide ‘Phulkari’ training to socially and economically deprive sections of society so that they can earn a living. Recently, State Bank of India contributed a grant of Rs 9,000 for the project.

A representative of the NGO said that though the commercialisation of phulkari has meant employment for thousands of women and a revival of the art, it is tragic that the traditional artisans now earn a pittance for their expertise because of the middlemen who grabs the maximum amount of profit generated.

With all the efforts enactus team endeavours to use this grant in helping phulkari regain its popularity and bring in its former glory back and along with this, empower a few lives.



Students visit Nature Interpretation Centre 
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 27
Students of The Gurukul School, Sector 20, Panchkula today visited the newly inaugurated Nature Interpretation Centre at the Sukhna Lake in Chandigarh.

Overwhelmed by the centre the eyes of the students lit up with sparkle with respect for Mother Nature’s true grandeur. The students were left mesmerised in the lap of Mother Nature, learning about the different species of birds.

Just a button away was a journey into not so familiar world of birds & animals in forest and their ways of communication. As the students pressed the buttons, the make believe forest came alive with sounds of scores of birds & animals. For the students this audio visual display of wildlife in its real form turned out to be a memorable experience. The 3D portrayal of animals made them one with the nature.

Furthermore, the information on the flora and fauna of the Sukhna Wildlife Sanctuary as well as of the Sukhna Lake has been displayed alongside the three kilometer long embankment of lake giving information about the bio-diversity of the area.

Shaurya, a student of class-II said, “It is so exciting to know that birds also have a language. They do not have speech but simple sounds that helps the birds to convey their message.”

Principal Harsimran Kaur said, “The outdoor study tours like these for students are an enriched source of knowledge way beyond books”. She added, “Such experience enlightens a child’s mind to explore more.”



panjab university
PUCSU demands reading hall for girls
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Panjab University Campus Students' Union (PUCSU) today submitted a memorandum to Member of Parliament Pawan Kumar Bansal to sanction fund for construction of a reading hall from MPLADS.

Bansal has agreed to fulfill this long pending demand and assured to sanction fund to Panjab University for the construction of a common reading hall for girls in the area near the girls hostel and an extra shop at student centre.

President Chandan Rana and NSUI President Manoj Lubana submitted the memorandum. Chandan Rana stated that there are more than 9,000 girls studying at the Panjab University campus, out of which 3,200 girls are residing in the hostels. The girls do not have any common reading hall in their hostels to study during night time.



school notes
NSS Camp

Chandigarh: NSS Camp was concluded today at MRA School, Sector 27. In a week-long sequence programme Bikram Rana, state liaison officer, NSS, Chandigarh, interacted with students discussing about National Social Service Scheme and motivated them for social service. All volunteers participated actively in the session and promised to implement it in their lives.

Saint Soldier International School

The NSS Unit of Saint Soldier International School, Sector- 28 B, Chandigarh, enthusiastically organised the opening ceremony of the Annual NSS Camp. The programme commenced with a poem titled “Health” to make the audience aware about the need of maintaining fitness and good health. The NSS Wing of Class XI also presented a skit based on AIDS. Aarti Gupta, school counsellor highlighted the need to counter stress through a talk on stress management. A skit on “Women Empowerment” was also presented.


A seven-day special NSS camp began today at GSSS-Dhanas. During the camp various resource persons delivered lecturers on dignity of labour, personality development, first-aid, disaster management and tree plantation. Rallies on crime against women and aids awareness were carried out to spread awareness.

Christmas celebrations

Sanskara School

The Human Excellence Club of the Sanskara School initiated a unique project “Hum Bhi Santa-The Joy of Giving” to celebrate and spread the spirit of Christmas. Students were requested to donate their old toys, board games, footwear, bags and woollens, clothes etc, which were distributed among poor children. Teachers and old students of the school baked some Christmas goodies like cup cakes, muffins and puddings, which were also distributed among these children. The aim of forming this “Santa’s Brigade” was to reinforce the idea that the society is an extension of our family as well as to instill a feeling of gratitude, thereby understanding the real spirit of Christmas.

DC Montessori School

Students of DC Montessori School celebrated Christmas with a festive spirit on the school premises. The celebration started with distribution of sweets among kids by Santa Claus. There was Christmas carol singing and Christmas decorations all over the school premises .The teachers extended their whole hearted support in making the event a success. There was the Christmas spirit and joy throughout the day.

St Joseph’s School

Students of St Joseph’s Senior Secondary School, Sector 44, visited the church in Sector 19. The priest narrated the story of Jesus Christ from his birth to crucifixion. Beautiful tableaus depicting various phases of Jesus’ life, heaven and hell, moral values were displayed. The children offered prayer for the welfare of humankind. The visit was organised for the students to develop a sense of respect and love for all religions, mainly to realise the fact that “God is one.” They were encouraged to follow the path of goodness and always help the needy, like Jesus.

Annual function

Students of Sri Aurobindo School, Sector 27, celebrated their annual function with vigour and enthusiasm. The function began on an auspicious note by the lighting of ceremonial lamp by the chief guest Kamlesh Kumar DPI (Schools). The main attraction of the day was the hilarious play “Yamraj”. Apart from entertainment, the play was a wake-up call to shun their callous attitude. The children won the hearts with their mesmerising performance. The songs written by the students and teachers and the enigmatic dances choreographed by the teachers added glow to the function.

AIDS workshop

The first session of the NSS Camp, KDDAV, Sector 7, organised a workshop on HIV-AIDS. The workshop was organised by Sunil Kumar from State AIDS Control Society, Chandigarh. The information about the difficulties faced by those infected by HIV-AIDS, the misconceptions about the virus, various tests to detect HIV, vulnerable groups and the highest risk groups were shared with the volunteers. The workshop threw light upon the appropriate way to fight HIV-AIDS through medical help and through involvement of community and creating awareness among the masses.

Womanhood celebrations

Mohali: Tiny-Tots Foundation School today celebrated the spirit of womanhood. The school thanked all the women of the world for their strength and capabilities. A session on women empowerment was also held on the school premises.

Blind school visit

Panchkula: Students of DAV Senior Public School, Surajpur, Panchkula, visited Blind School, Sector 26, Chandigarh. They distributed gifts and candies to the students. They had a heartening experience on seeing the visually disabled braving all odds with tremendous courage and grit. The students enlivened the environment y singing Christmas carols, patriotic songs along with the students of blind institute.

Science exhibition

The students of Vivek High school, Mohali, today organised a science and art exhibition showcasing various projects based on various subjects. The exhibition was organised by students of Class IV to X. It dwelled upon environmental issues, disaster management, human organ system, and the importance of light and sound. “For a better understanding we divided each part of the exhibition on theme related to the subject taught in the classes,” stated Anuradha Dua, principal of the school. “It is a practical way of teaching students of what they have learned throughout the year in an interesting manner.” It was heartening to see how students have simplified the complicated subjects through their projects and the confidence they carry while explaining them, said one of the parent visiting the exhibition.

Special assembly

In a special assembly, students of The British School, Sector 8, Panchkula, were apprised of the winter months, the care which should be taken during these times. They were guided to eat healthy and nutritious food, fruits and vegetables and were asked to sit in the sun to soak up Vitamin D.

According to the school authorities, teachers will be undergoing a training session to update themselves on the latest changes and technology. — TNS



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