SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

5 yrs on, cops clueless in GPO robbery
Jalandhar, January 14
Upset over the poor performance of the Jalandhar police in the over five-year-old Rs 40-lakh high-profile robbery case at the General Post Office (GPO) here, the postal department is set to write to the state Director-General of Police (DGP) in this regard.

An outer view of the General Post Office, Jalandhar.

Palm Royal flats: Residents say dampness, cracks continue to plague their houses
Jalandhar, January 14
Even two years after having fought a legal battle against the builders of Palm Royal flats and the Municipal Corporation (MC), having got a decision in their favour and getting top officials, including a senior town planner and a building inspector suspended, the problem of residents of Bank Enclave here has only worsened.


EARLIER STORIES



JDA sans plan on use of prime properties
Jalandhar, January 14
More than a year after the Jalandhar Development Authority (JDA) had started reworking on its ongoing residential and commercial projects in the heart of the city, the authorities have failed to come up with a concrete plan on using its prime properties.

The old SSP office site which was to house a commercial complex and a parking lot in Jalandhar. Photo: Sarabjit Singh

Mayor yet to form sub-committees
Jalandhar, January 14
Even though it has been a year and four months since Mayor Sunil Jyoti assumed charge, he has so far failed to set up any of the 21 sub-committees for various works.


Festive spirit
: Children buy kites and strings on the occasion of Makar Sankranti in Jalandhar on Tuesday. Photo: Sarabjit Singh

Hockey tourney
Govt Model School enters quarter-finals
Jalandhar, January 14
Last year’s runner’s-up Government Model School, Jalandhar, entered the quarter-finals of the 10th All India Balwant Singh Kapur Hockey Tournament (under-17 school boys) for Mata Parkash Kaur Cup by beating Guru Gobind Singh Sports College, Lucknow, by 9-2 at Olympian Surjit Hockey Stadium, here today.

Safai sewaks’ stir from today
Jalandhar, January 14
Protesting against the implementation of the solid waste management project, safai karamcharis here have decided to go on an indefinite strike from tomorrow. Led by Chandan Grewal of the Sewer Safai Mazdur Union, the members have raised a slew of demands, including the abolition of the contractual system of employment, appointing 15,000 new sewermen and safai karamcharis in the state, giving an option of pension to employees and also ex-gratia allowance as was being offered earlier.

Traffic Rules Awareness Week organised
Kapurthala, January 14
The Kapurthala police officials have decided to focus on the need to spread awareness among the masses about drunken driving. Addressing the students in the ongoing 25th Traffic Rules Awareness Week organised by the traffic police in coordination with Lions Club, Kapurtala, DSP (Sub-Division) Balwinder Singh Sekhon said most of the accidents occur only because of drunken driving.

Traffic police officials putting reflectors on a tractor-trailer in Kapurthala on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Burglars strike at trader’s house
Kapurthala, January 14
Burglars struck at the house of a businessman and decamped with cash and valuables worth lakhs of rupees in Mansoorwal Colony on the previous night.

2 booked for kidnapping
Kapurthala, January 14
The Kapurthala police have registered a case of alleged kidnapping against a mother-son duo. According to the information available, one Manjit Kaur and her son Sonu, residents of Sunder Nagar, allegedly kidnapped a minor girl, a resident of the same locality.

AAP reaches out to people through e-mails
Phagwara, January 14
The Aam Aadmi Party headed by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has adopted modern technology for its membership drive and to fulfill its target of enrolling one crore members by January 26 in the country.

Feedback
Jalandhar Tribune invites feedback from its readers on issues of public concern relating to Jalandhar, Phagwara, Kapurthala and the nearby areas.

 

 





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5 yrs on, cops clueless in GPO robbery
Postal Department to write to Punjab Police chief regarding the matter
Nikhil Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 14
Upset over the poor performance of the Jalandhar police in the over five-year-old Rs 40-lakh high-profile robbery case at the General Post Office (GPO) here, the postal department is set to write to the state Director-General of Police (DGP) in this regard.

The GPO move comes as the city police has failed to gather even a single vital clue in the matter. The GPO also served several reminders to the city police, and claimed that the police didn’t even bother to reply to their reminders.

Interestingly, after the GPO robbery, the Jalandhar police saw change of several police chiefs, but no official has been able to make any concrete progress in the case. After two years of the robbery, the police commissionerate system had also come into existence, but all officers, except making tall claims, did not show any progress.

Four robbers had struck on the night of November 5 in 2008 at the GPO near Nehru Garden here, and after breaking the lock of the iron box and tying the watchman with ropes, had decamped with Rs 40 lakh

BS Sandhu, superintendent of post office (headquarters), told The Tribune that despite five years having passed, the city police couldn't move a step forward in their investigation. It seemed the police was left with only tall claims and nothing else, he added.

“We have now planned to approach the Punjab Police chief to apprise him of the dismal performance of the city police in this case. We will soon write a letter to the DGP and seek a complete review of the investigation,” Sandhu said.

Sandhu, while cursing the lackadaisical attitude of the police on the issue, said, the investigating officer in the case once had raised his hands and had declared the case untraced.

“On December 10, 2012, the officer inquiring the case had put up an untraced report before the then Police Commissioner Gaurav Yadav to seek his permission to close the case investigation, but the same was denied by Yadav, who directed the ACP (Central) to speed up the investigation,” Sandhu said while showing the copy of the police request to close the case files.

How could the police declare the case untraced as it involved a loss of Rs 40 lakh to the GPO? SP GPO said, adding that the GPO had also served several reminders to the police to seek the status of the ongoing investigation, but the police had replied to their reminders once only.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Rahul S said since he had recently joined in Jalandhar, he would surely inquire why the police had failed to make any headway in the matter. "I will look into each and every aspect of the case and will diligently review it with the motive to get some lead in it, he added.

Another unsolved case

On January 18 last year, burglars had struck at the Punjab & Sind Bank branch at Rehru village and had decamped with valuables worth several crores after cutting open the 40 lockers with gas-cutters. In this case too, the police has failed to make any headway. Sources said the police had inquired over 2,000 phone numbers active during the time of the robbery in the bank. The police had also visited various states where incidents with same modus operandi had been reported in the past. DCP Rahul S said he would also look into this case.

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Palm Royal flats: Residents say dampness, cracks continue to plague their houses
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service


A resident of Bank Enclave shows dampness in her house in Jalandhar on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Jalandhar, January 14
Even two years after having fought a legal battle against the builders of Palm Royal flats and the Municipal Corporation (MC), having got a decision in their favour and getting top officials, including a senior town planner and a building inspector suspended, the problem of residents of Bank Enclave here has only worsened.

The residents, who had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court against the builders for having illegally constructed a water tank in the basement just adjoining their backyard boundaries, are still facing the problem of dampness and cracks in their houses as the builders have failed to make any rectification since the passing of the orders in this connection on November 11 last.

Manmohan Singh, whose house falls at the rear of the building, said he had recently got his house painted at a cost of Rs 40,000 but the entire effort and money had gone waste as the dampness was back and the paint had started falling off. He showed how the floor of his verandah had got suppressed, pointing to the several cracks that had surfaced in it.

For its safe side, the MC is in the process of issuing a notice to AHR Promoters and Developers Ltd for making the necessary changes by February 4, failing which it would take action. The residents of nearly 10 affected houses, led by main petitioner Swaran Singh, have issued three reminders to the MC to take necessary steps after the court orders or be prepared to face the Contempt of Court proceedings.

Disposing of the petition, Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Judge Augustine George Masih had pronounced that "the builder will carry out rectifications before carrying out any further construction or if some construction made is compoundable, then necessary steps be taken for the purpose. The builder will also obtain all requisite permissions from the Punjab Pollution Control Board".

The court also asked the MC to ensure that no unauthorised construction took place in the building being constructed and if there was non-compliance, action would be taken in accordance with the law.

The case holds significance as the court had earlier ordered the suspension of building inspector Ajit Sharma and senior town planner Shakti Bhatia for their alleged negligence in the matter. The orders had moved the MC, which had also found that the builder, in violation of the sanctioned plan, had converted the two-bedroom flats into three by illegally constructing a partition in between two rooms.

Residents of Bank Enclave had also objected to the planting of trees along the boundary wall of the flat complex, as they had said that the watering of plants would further compound their problems. After this, the builders had made a rectification and constructed a concrete slab around the boundary.

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JDA sans plan on use of prime properties
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 14
More than a year after the Jalandhar Development Authority (JDA) had started reworking on its ongoing residential and commercial projects in the heart of the city, the authorities have failed to come up with a concrete plan on using its prime properties.

It was in June last year that the JDA had planned raising two chunks of commercial blocks on 18.97 acres on the Old Central Jail site here with a multi-tier parking lot. The administrators had then ordered that in view of the prevailing low demand for commercial centres in the real estate market, the plan should be revised to convert the site for the construction of residential towers.

The officials of the JDA, who had then started work on the commercial hub and even allotted work, have been groping in the dark for over a year, unaware of what all was in store. Estate Officer GS Sarangal said he had so far received no copy of a revised plan from the Mohali-based headquarters.

Similarly, the plan of the JDA to have a shopping arena at the Old SSP office site has been lying on the back burner for a long time.

Officials of the JDA said the paucity of funds for the purpose was to be blamed. The JDA also started reworking on its plan to have a total commercial complex at the old irrigation office site on Kapurthala Road. The plan was to be reworked to make the frontal portion available for commercial use, leaving the area at the rear for the construction of residential towers. However, the development of this project, too, lies in a limbo.

Jalandhar Development Authority Chief Administrator Jaskiran Singh said he had learnt that drawings of two of the three plans had been cleared and that he was hopeful that the works would get started again.

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Mayor yet to form sub-committees
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 14
Even though it has been a year and four months since Mayor Sunil Jyoti assumed charge, he has so far failed to set up any of the 21 sub-committees for various works.

In 16 months, the Mayor has only formed Finance and Contracts Committee and a few ad hoc committees on the issues of deadlock or on matters on which inquiries have been sought by the House. He has not formed any of the regular committees to look into the day-to-day concerns regarding streetlights, water supply and sewage disposal, house tax, buildings and roads. All such committees are mandatory under Section 42 of the constitution of the Municipal Corporation (MC).

Section 42-A of the constitution also stipulates that corporations having population of more than 3 lakh should have ward committees of not less than five wards. “Since there are 60 wards in Jalandhar, 12 such committees ought to be set up by the authorities, which has never been thought of by any of the five mayors,” said social activist Kailash Thukral.

As per the constitution, each ward committee shall consist of councillors elected from the wards for which the ward committee is formed, Commissioner to act as ex-officio member, officers nominated by the commissioner with one of them as secretary of the committee. It has also been clearly stated that the number of ex-officio members should not be more than half the strength of the elected members of the ward committees. The chairperson of the committee will be elected by the elected councillors from among themselves.

Thukral, who has even filed an RTI into the matter with the MC, says that the authorities had failed to empower at least 12 such councillors who could act as chairpersons for a cluster of wards.

Senior Deputy Mayor Kamaljit Bhatia too expressed his annoyance at the dilly dallying of setting up of committees. “Only ad hoc committees have been formed so far, those too during issues which could not be settled in the House such as the one to check the non-functioning streetlights of which I was a member. There have been no regular committees which could have kept an eye on various development works. Having ward-wise committees is a far-fetched idea even as I am well aware of the fact that the provision is laid down in our constitution,” he commented.

Mayor Sunil Jyoti could not be contacted.

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Hockey tourney
Govt Model School enters quarter-finals
Tribune News Service


Players of Chandigarh and Amritsar teams fight for the possession of the ball during the 10th All India Balwant Singh Kapur Hockey Tournament in Jalandhar on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Sarabjit Singh

Jalandhar, January 14
Last year’s runner’s-up Government Model School, Jalandhar, entered the quarter-finals of the 10th All India Balwant Singh Kapur Hockey Tournament (under-17 school boys) for Mata Parkash Kaur Cup by beating Guru Gobind Singh Sports College, Lucknow, by 9-2 at Olympian Surjit Hockey Stadium, here today.

In the other league matches, BSNV School, Lucknow, defeated Government Raj School, Sangrur, by 4-1, Government Model School, Chandigarh, defeated Spring Dale School, Amritsar, by 6-4 and the match between CRZ, Sonipat, and Khalsa School, Mehta, was locked at 4-4 draw.

In the first match in Poll D, Government Model School, Jalandhar, the boys displayed good skills. In the 2nd minute, the Jalandhar boys took lead when Ajmer Singh struck a goal. In the 4th minute, Guru Gobind Singh Sports College, Lucknow, equalised when Virant Malik scored a goal. In the 6th minute, Lucknow boys took lead with Aditya Yadav scoring a goal taking the card to 2-1.

After that, Jalandhar boys gave no chance to Lucknow boys. For Jalandhar, Ajmer Singh scored in the 11th and 12th minute, Navdeep Singh in the 17th minute, Inderjit Singh in the 23rd minute, Shamsher singh in the 37th minute, Navdeep Singh in the 38th minute, Harjot Singh in the 43rd minute and Baljinder Singh in the 55th minute to win the match at 9-2.

In the second match in Pool C, Government Model School, Chandigarh, defeated Spring Dale School, Amritsar, by 6-4. For Chandigarh, the goals were scored by Maninderjeet Singh in the first minute, Mandeep Mor in the 14th minute, Manjinder Singh in the 33rd minute, Milanpreet Singh in the 37th minute, Gurjeet Singh in the 44th minute, Mehkeet Singh in the 57th minute.

For Amritsar, the goals were scored by Kawaljit Singh in the first minute and the fourth minute, Amanpreet Singh in the 39th minute and Jagdeep Singh in the 52nd minute of the play.

In the third match of the day, BSNV Lucknow defeated Government Raj School Sangrur by 4-1. For Lucknow, Sahil Kuma scored three goals in 22nd, 32 nd and 58th minute and Ajay Yadev in the 51st minute.

For Sangrur, Karan scored in the 53rd minute of the play. In the fourth match in pool B, CRZ, Sonipat, locked Khalsa School, Mehta, by 4-4. For Mehta, Jagjit Singh scored in the 11th minute, Sukhjit Singh in the 44th minute, Manmeet Singh in the 45th minute and Sukhjit Singh in the 59th minute. For Sonipat, Akshey scored a goal in the 18th minute, Manish in the 46th minute, Amit in the 51st minute and Abishek in the 58th minute of the play.

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Safai sewaks’ stir from today
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 14
Protesting against the implementation of the solid waste management project, safai karamcharis here have decided to go on an indefinite strike from tomorrow. Led by Chandan Grewal of the Sewer Safai Mazdur Union, the members have raised a slew of demands, including the abolition of the contractual system of employment, appointing 15,000 new sewermen and safai karamcharis in the state, giving an option of pension to employees and also ex-gratia allowance as was being offered earlier.

Road-relaying work

Setting an example and showing it to the masses that they were united on the development front, councillors of all three main parties came together at a public function held for the inauguration of the Rs 83-lakh relaying work of Master Gurbanta Singh Marg here.

It was perhaps because of the fact that there were residents of five wards who are going to be benefited that Congress councillors Sushil Rinku, Amanjit Kaur Major and Baldev Singh, BJP councillor Darshan Lal Bhagat and SAD councillor-cum-Senior Deputy Mayor Kamaljit Bhatia all came together on one platform to take the joint credit.

The road has been in dire straits for the past few months. Bhatia said that damaged sewage had led to the wear and tear of the road which would now be relaid with fresh basework.

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Traffic Rules Awareness Week organised
Our Correspondent

Kapurthala, January 14
The Kapurthala police officials have decided to focus on the need to spread awareness among the masses about drunken driving. Addressing the students in the ongoing 25th Traffic Rules Awareness Week organised by the traffic police in coordination with Lions Club, Kapurtala, DSP (Sub-Division) Balwinder Singh Sekhon said most of the accidents occur only because of drunken driving.

“Many innocent people loose their lives because of fatal accidents that occur due to the influence of liquor,” he said.

Balwinder added that a driver with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.10 or greater is seven times more likely to be involved in a fatal motor vehicle crash than the one who abstains from it. “On an average, ten persons loose their life, while fifty sustain injuries daily in Punjab on account of road mishaps,” he added. Kulwinder Singh, in charge, Traffic Education Cell also guided the students that a seatbelt in the vehicle was must as it proved helpful in saving the driver’s life in case of accidents.

Kulwinder added that during the night, driving reflectors play a vital role in guiding the vehicle drivers while passing near the tractor-trailers, bicycle-rickshaws, bicycles and wheel carts. Meanwhile, the traffic police personnel also affixed reflectors on hundreds of tractor-trailers, three-wheelers and rickshaws today.

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Burglars strike at trader’s house
Our Correspondent

Kapurthala, January 14
Burglars struck at the house of a businessman and decamped with cash and valuables worth lakhs of rupees in Mansoorwal Colony on the previous night.

According to information, the house owners had gone to Ludhiana to attend a Lohri function, when the theft took place. As the family returned today morning, they came to know about the theft. House owner Vinod Kumar Arora said when he saw everything scattered in the house, he immediately informed the police. He told the police that the lock of the main gate was not found tampered, which indicated that the burglars entered the house by scaling the wall and broke the window grill to enter inside the house.

During checking, Vinod found that cash Rs 20,000, an LPG cylinder, a computer, a pair of gold earrings and many other household goods were missing. The city police have registered a case against unidentified persons and have started investigations.

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2 booked for kidnapping
Our Correspondent

Kapurthala, January 14
The Kapurthala police have registered a case of alleged kidnapping against a mother-son duo. According to the information available, one Manjit Kaur and her son Sonu, residents of Sunder Nagar, allegedly kidnapped a minor girl, a resident of the same locality.

Following a complaint in this regard submitted to the police by Swaran Singh, father of the girl, the police have booked the mother-son duo under Sections 363, 366-A and 120-B of the IPC.

The complainant claimed that since Sunday evening, his daughter had been missing. “I suspect that Sonu in connivance with Manjit had kidnapped my daughter,” he alleged. The police have been conducting raids to nab the accused.

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AAP reaches out to people through e-mails
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, January 14
The Aam Aadmi Party headed by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has adopted modern technology for its membership drive and to fulfill its target of enrolling one crore members by January 26 in the country.

The party members have sent e-mails to lakhs of e-mail users throughout the country from the official email id of AAP —[email protected] to inspire people to join the party.

The content of the e-mail is: “Your party has launched a nation-wide campaign to recruit members across the country. Our target is 1 crore members by January 26. This will establish a strong foundation of your party for the Lok Sabha elections in a few months. Your party needs your help. We request you to reach out to your friends and family and encourage them to become members. If each one of you enrolls 10 members, we will reach our membership goal.”

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Feedback

Jalandhar Tribune invites feedback from its readers on issues of public concern relating to Jalandhar, Phagwara, Kapurthala and the nearby areas. Readers can email their views to

[email protected]

They can also send their views to: Feedback, Jalandhar Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh - 160029. Letters sent by post must mention 'Feedback for Jalandhar Tribune' on the envelope and it should be signed and must contain the address and telephone number of the sender. It should not be more than 150 words.

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