C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Chinks appear in city unit of AAP 
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
After fissures in the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) came out in the open with Delhi MLA Vinod Kumar Binny taking on Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the Chandigarh unit of the party also witnessed a similar situation today.

Some old members of the Chandigarh unit of AAP today accused senior AAP leader and national executive member of the party Yogendra Yadav and Haryana spokesperson and observer of the Chandigarh unit Rajeev Godara of promoting people close to them in the Chandigarh unit and sidelining old workers of the party.

One of the founder members of the Chandigarh unit of AAP, Kanwar Singh (64), a wrestler and retired UT constable, said Yadav and Godara were behaving like dictators and not listening to the old party workers.

Yadav had roped in Godara as they were old friends and were also the founder members of the Sampooran Kranti Manch, Haryana. Godara tried to appoint his friend and former nominated councillor Pallav Mukherjee as the convener of the Chandigarh unit but when he failed, the Chandigarh unit was disbanded, he said.

The new party office in Sector 16 was also opened at Ashok Sheoran’s residence, who is known to Godara and Yadav.

He alleged that a five-member committee, formed by Yadav, did not have any old member and all its members were Yadav and Godara’s friends.

Another AAP member Chander Kant Verma said old members were working for the party since the time when people were hardly with AAP. However, after the Delhi election results, old party workers were sidelined in Chandigarh and responsibilities were given to those who were close to Yadav and Godara, he said.

Echoing similar views, PD Bhargava, another old AAP member in the city, said AAP was hardly following 1 per cent of the rules and regulations made at the time of forming the party. People against whom there were complaints from old members were now holding important positions in the Chandigarh unit of the party, he said.

No favouritism: Sheoran

AAP member Ashok Sheoran, who is an advocate, said the party office at his Sector 16 residence was temporary and the party was looking for a bigger space. There was no favouritism in the party and it was an “aam aadmi’s” party. The old committee was disbanded as there was a lack of coordination and soon a new committee would be formed, he said.



A promising career cut short
Only son, accident victim wanted to study abroad
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
He was the only son of his parents and had dreams of going to Canada for further studies to make it big in life. However, a promising career of an 18-year-old engineering student, Deepanshu Sudhir, was cut short by an accident on the Sector 19/27 road yesterday. His death has left his family and friends shattered for whom life will never be the same again without him.

Deepanshu’s parents, who have been staying in a rented accommodation in Sector 27 for the past several years, had settled in the city from Patiala for their son’s studies to ensure a bright future for him.

A second-year student of production in a polytechnic college in Sector 26, Deepanshu had just returned home from Ludhiana yesterday with his parents when he went out with his friend Ankush on a bike and died in a road accident. Ankush is admitted to the PGI. A woman, Santosh, who was crossing the road, was also injured in the mishap.

A pall of gloom descended on the residence of the victim. His mother almost fainted on seeing her son’s body and “tried to him to wake him up”. His wallowing father said life had no meaning for them now.

“My son meant everything to me; no one is left in my life now. He was my only son and we were a small and happy family of three. I wish it’s a bad dream and he comes back to life again. He was so helpful and fond of studies; my life is over now,” said the victim’s father, Tarsem, a teacher.

“He was not overspeeding as claimed by the police, the mishap just occurred in a split second, he was also wearing a helmet. The woman was crossing the road when the light was green,” said another relative.

“He wanted to see his ailing grandfather in Ludhiana and had gone there with his parents yesterday. He was a very good student, good natured and very talented. He was clear hearted and a good friend of mine, the loss is irreparable,” said his friend Dilshad Malik. “I knew him ever since he was a child and still remember the affection with which he used to greet me. Clad in a kurta-pyjama, he used to always rush to do any work given to him; it’s very tragic,” said a neighbour.

Victim booked

The UT police have booked the victim, Deepanshu Sudhir. A case has been registered at the Sector 19 police station. The case was registered on Geeta’s statement who alleged that the motorcycle rider was overspeeding and hit her sister, Santosh, leaving her injured.



Man clobbers expectant wife
Victim dies moments after delivering a baby girl at a hospital in Panchkula
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 17
An eight-month-old expectant woman was clobbered allegedly by her husband following a heated exchange late last night at their residence in Gunthala village near Chandimandir. The victim was taken to the Alchemist hospital, Sector 21, here in a critical condition where she delivered a premature baby girl and died moments later. The couple had got married on January 29 last year.

The police have arrested the victim’s husband, Ram Kumar, an agriculturist, under Section 302 of the IPC.

Police sources said the accused was in an inebriated condition when he hit the victim. Preliminary investigation suggested that Reena was hit five times. The postmortem would be conducted tomorrow.

Inspector Pradeep Kumar, Station House Officer of the Pinjore police station, said investigations were under way. “The victim’s in-laws, including her brother-in-law, were also putting at the same residence. Ram Kumar returned home around 10.30 pm. Both of them were in their room when a heated argument took place and Ram hit Reena,” said the SHO. According to the police, the couple often used to have heated arguments over Ram’s habit of drinking.

After hearing Reena’s shrieks, her family members took her to the hospital. Dr Sunil Gambhir, a forensic expert at the General Hospital, Sector 6, said, “The woman’s head was crushed. The clear picture will emerge after the postmortem.”

The victim’s father, Babu Ram, said, “I got a call from her in-laws, who said Reena had accidentally suffered an injury and she was in the hospital. It was only when we reached the hospital that we came to know about the entire incident.” On a complaint of Babu Ram, the police have registered a case.

The baby girl is lying uncared for at the Alchemist hospital.

Confusion over jurisdiction

Sources said the Alchemist hospital authorities, after finding that the area falls under the jurisdiction of the Chandimandir police station, informed the police about the incident.

Officials from the Chandimandir police station went to the hospital and found that the matter came under the jurisdiction of the Pinjore police station following which officials from the Pinjore police station reached the hospital.


The accused, Ram Kumar, returned home around 10.30 pm on Thursday night. He had a heated argument with Reena and clobbered her. According to the police, the couple often used to have heated arguments over Ram’s habit of drinking.



HIV+ patient undergoes kidney transplant 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
For 35-year-old Harish (name changed), an HIV/AIDS patient, the stigma of being isolated from society was not all that aggravated his struggle. Diagnosed with renal (kidney) failure, he also suffered resistance from the medical fraternity for his survival.

Being HIV-infected, the patient had been struggling for dialysis as most renal centres remained reluctant to offer him the dialysis service (a must in case of kidney failure) fearing the risk of HIV transmission to other patients coming for dialysis.

In a region’s first, nephrologists at Max Hospital, Mohali, performed the kidney transplant surgery on Harish. This is the first transplant surgery on an HIV+ Indian native north of Delhi.

Harish contracted this infection while he was a teenager through the sharing of needles among his peer group. Later, he quit drugs, got a Bachelor's degree and involved himself in the family business. About 10 years ago, he was devastated when he tested positive for HIV.

With effective medication, his general condition remained stable and he got married and was leading a normal life. His 27-year-old wife, Heena (name changed), donated one of her kidneys to him. “The good part in this case was that Harish got a lot of support from his family. In fact, his wife agreed to marry him despite knowing that he was HIV+. She knew him since the college days. Fortunately, since Harish was under proper medication, neither his wife nor their child got infected with the virus,” said Sanand Bag, Senior Urologist and Transplant Surgeon, Max Hospital.

The surgery was performed by a team of doctors, comprising Dr Vinay Sakhuja, Director, Nephrology and Transplant Medicine, Dr Munish Chauhan, Senior Consultant Nephrologist and Transplant Physician, and Dr Bag.

Life expectancy

"Careful patient selection, coordinated transplant and infectious disease care, managing drug interactions and continuous monitoring and surveillance for infections are the key to success in such cases," said Dr Bag. In all of these were ensured, an HIV patient could survive for more than five years.

What the surgery costs for HIV patients

In a private setting, the kidney transplant surgery on an HIV patient costs about 10 per cent higher than that of a non-HIV kidney patient. The basic cost for non-HIV patient is about Rs 2.5 lakh in a private setting in the region.

Added precautions taken in this case

"There are universal precautions which have to be taken. To name a few, our medical team had to wear double gowns and masks for accidental splashing and fumigation of operation theatres. “But the most important aspect was the disposal of bio-medical waste. The body fluids of such a patient need to be destroyed with 10 per cent of bleach and have to be incinerated properly. We ensured all that,” said Dr Sakhuja.


LPG-run auto operators protest
Block road against fuel price hike, plying of diesel auto-rickshaws on city roads
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
On the call of “Rasta Roko” given by the Tricity Auto Rickshaw Union, hundreds of LPG-run auto-rickshaw operators assembled at the Hallo Majra light point to register their protest against the recent hike in fuel prices.

The operators also protested against the indifferent and insensitive attitude of the Chandigarh Administration towards their long-pending demands. The protestors, who blocked the road, alleged the police forcibly picked them up and resorted to lathi charge.

Surinder Bhardwaj, chairman of the union, said the silence of the Chandigarh Administration on the issue of plying of unauthorised diesel auto-rickshaws in the City Beautiful was a matter of concern.

Secretary, State Transport Authority, Mahavir Kaushik reached the spot to pacify the agitators. He assured them that the transport authority would initiate a drive to impound diesel auto-rickshaws and rid the city of these pollution-causing vehicles within 10 days.

Diesel autos impounded

The State Transport Authority (STA), Chandigarh, today started a drive against diesel auto-rickshaws plying on the City Beautiful roads.

Mahavir Kaushik, Secretary, STA, and Rajiv Tewari, Additional Secretary, STA, carried out the drive at the Hallo Majra light point besides Sectors 32 and 47 roundabouts. Around 50 diesel auto-rickshaws were impounded and challaned.

The department will continue with the drive and also take up the matter with the Chandigarh Police to check the plying of these illegal auto-rickshaws in the city.



Mohali residents left high and dry
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 17
Residents are having a tough time following the disruption in supply of water to Mohali due to the ongoing repair work at the Kajauli waterworks.

Although water was supplied at low pressure to the ground floors during the morning and evening hours, those living on the upper floors were forced to go downstairs to collect water to meet their daily requirements.

Overhead water tanks, too, went dry in certain areas, leading to inconvenience to residents.

The worst-hit areas included Phases I, II, III-A, III-B1 and IV. Residents of certain pockets in these phases were supplied water by tankers.

RP Gupta, executive engineer of the Department of Water Supply and Sanitation, said the water supply would be restored by around midnight. Three valves had been installed, and four or five would be installed after a fortnight, he said.

The Chandigarh Administration along with the Mohali branch of the Department of Water Supply and Sanitation are repairing valves in the pipelines of Phases I and II of the waterworks.



Narendra Modi gets backers in city youth
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
With an aim to counter the Aam Aadmi Party’s rising popularity among the youth, a group of supporters of Narendra Modi today launched a “Team Modi” campaign to garner support for the BJP's prime ministerial candidate in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Addressing a press conference, “Team Modi” members Surinder Chauhan and Gurtej Pannu said the campaign was being launched at Chandigarh and will gradually spread across the country.

They said already in the City Beautiful, 10,000 volunteers had got themselves enrolled in the campaign, and will spread Modi’s message to every youth in the country.

Chauhan said they were planning to campaign for Modi by making posters and sending SMSes.

They have also started a helpline number, which will be manned by the volunteers, said Chauhan.

They would also go to each college and university to enlist more volunteers. These students will be assigned specific work as a part of garnering support for Modi, he said.

Pannu said the volunteers would carry stickers seeking support for Modi on their vehicles.

No political backing?

Although the “Team Modi” members claimed no political party was backing them, Surinder Chauhan, who addressed the press conference, is an active RSS worker. Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan also extended his best wishes to the newly launched campaign.



Fog leaves air passengers stranded for third day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
For the third day in a row, low visibility led to the grounding of most of the flights at the Chandigarh domestic airport here today. Only two of the 11 flights could operate throughout the day owing to dense fog. Over 1,500 passengers were affected due to the cancellations. The rail traffic was also affected, with four long-route trains being delayed at the railway station.

All the four outgoing flights of Jet Airways, to Delhi at 11.40 am and 5.15 pm, to Mumbai at 12.40 pm and to Bengaluru via Delhi at 5.40 pm, had to be cancelled.

Two Delhi-bound flights of SpiceJet, at 10.25 am and 5.10 pm, also remained grounded.

Besides, Air India’s Chandigarh-Delhi-Mumbai flight at 11.25 did not take off. Two flights of GoAir on the Chandigarh-Mumbai route were also called off due to bad weather.

Only Indigo could manage to operate its two Mumbai-bound flights after visibility improved for a brief period between 2 pm and 3 pm.

A passenger said it was unfortunate that a modern city such as Chandigarh lacked basic facilities at its airport. A senior official of an airline said the cancellation of flights could have been avoided if the airport had an advanced instrument landing system.

“For the past many years, instrument landing system is being operated at the basic CAT-I level, which needs to be upgraded to the CAT-II level for smooth functioning of the airport during winters,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kalka-bound train from Howrah (No. 12311) arrived 4 hours 45 minutes behind schedule at the Chandigarh railway station. Meanwhile Lucknow-bound train (No. 12231) left an hour and a half late.

The train from Lucknow (No. 15011) also arrived 1 hour 30 minutes behind schedule. Unchahar Express (No. 14217) was running late by as many as three hours. 

Mercury to drop today

The Meteorological Department has predicted light rainfall, with chances of lesser fog on Saturday. The maximum and minimum temperatures are expected to drop.



GMADA retrieves 2 acres of encroached land
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 17
The enforcement wing of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) retrieved about two acres of encroached land around Mohali village.

The team headed by Sukhpal Singh, SDO, spent about three hours to get the land vacated. He said villagers had sown fodder on the land which had been acquired by GMADA. Some sheds had also come up in the area were demolished.

He said all the encroachments around Mohali village had been identified by GMADA officials which would be retrieved shortly. He said residents had been asked to remove their belongings from the illegal structures that had come up on government land. A temple, small shops and small tombs had come up on the acquired land.

The enforcement wing took a JCB machine, security personnel and police force for retrieving the encroached land. 



PGI panel raids chemist shop, finds violations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
Serious violations, including untidiness, litter, expired medicines and a defective refrigerator were found at a chemist shop in the PGIMER campus during a raid conducted by PGI estate committee two days back.

A detailed report of the violations was submitted by PGIMER's Estate Committee Commercial to the administration today revealed that the chemist shop was not following proper refrigeration. Huge cartons were kept in the corridor.

As per the drug and cosmetic rules, shops required to maintain proper cleanliness but also supposed to store inject able medicines at a temperature between 2 and 8 degrees.

While the refrigerator was found defective, there was untidiness in the shop.

The chemist shop is located in the old shopping complex of PGIMER.

The matter will be taken up in the forthcoming meeting of the Estate Committee Commercial headed by the Deputy Director (Administration), Chetan PS Rao. 



‘Safai sewaks’ hold protest in Mohali
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 17
Garbage has started piling up in homes and markets here as the strike by private “safai sewaks” continued today. The “safai sewaks” are protesting against the new contract system of garbage collection which the Municipal Corporation plans to adopt.

The strike started on January 15 and since then garbage has not been collected from houses in the city. The safai sewaks organised a protest today and raised slogans against the government. They also burnt effigies of the Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and Additional Commissioner of the corporation BD Singla.

Garbage was seen lying near various places which was allegedly dumped by protesters. These heaps were later removed by employees of the civic body.

At some places police protection was sought for removing garbage.

Private “safai sewaks” allegedly stopped employees working on contract with the civic body from lifting garbage from the town’s collection points. According to reports, some of these employees are supporting the private “safai sewaks” protest.

SS Barnala, former Municipal Councillor, said heaps of garbage were seen lying this morning at various places in Phase XI, Phases IX and X, near the office of the Punjab School Education Board and the Phase VII traffic light chowk. An animal carcass was also dumped near the Bank Colony in Phase X. This was removed by the civic body under police protection.

Suraj Bhan, president, Mohali Safai Mazdoor Federation, Mohali, denied that garbage was dumped by the protesters at some points. He said their protest was against the contract system planned by the corporation as it would adversely affect the livelihood of hundreds of persons. He said the work of lifting garbage for the solid waste management project for the entire state had been given on contract by the Punjab Government to a Mumbai-based company. Such a move was going to seriously hit the livelihood of 1.32 lakh people in Punjab, he added.

Commissioner of the corporation Uma Shankar Gupta said the private “safai sewaks” protest was unjustified as the solid waste management project had not started so far in Mohali.

He said the work of sanitation would go on as usual and action would be taken against any contractual employee with the civic body who tried to create hurdles in the work. Photography was also being done, and if somebody was found deliberately dumping garbage, police action would be initiated.



RWAs flay property tax 
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 17
Members of various residents’ welfare associations held a dharna in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner. They were protesting against the levying of property tax on residents.

Protesters criticised the Punjab Government for putting an additional burden on the residents who were already hard pressed due to high prices of essential commodities.

Residents said the government does not bother about the welfare of the people. Ministers were availing enhanced pay scales and various allowances and their salaries were increased according to their whims.

The protesters appealed to residents not to pay property tax and said if the government fails to withdraw its decision on property tax it would have to face the consequences during the coming general elections.

A memorandum meant for the Punjab Government was also handed over to the Deputy Commissioner.



BJP workers protest against police chief’s absence
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 17
BJP workers today staged a protest outside the office of Panchkula Commissioner of Police Ajay Singhal at the Mansa Devi Complex in Sector 5. They had gone to submit a memorandum to the officer but he wasn’t available during the public meeting hours which led to the protest.

Singhal reached his office at around 1.20 pm and addressed to the problems of the workers sitting on dharna.

Singhal said, “I myself gave them the time for meeting yesterday. But I was called for an urgent meeting at the DGP office regarding the forthcoming strike. I sent Panchkula DCP to address their queries and later I met them too.”

Though, Deputy Commissioner of Police Ashwin Shenvi tried to pacify the agitators but the latter pressed that they would submit the memorandum to the Commissioner of Police only.

“We strongly feel that the officers should be present in their offices during public meeting hours otherwise non-availability of the officers causes a great deal of inconvenience to the public at large,” added senior BJP leader Gyan Chand Gupta.

Singhal later assured the workers to do the needful to improve the law and order situation in the city.



P’kula DLSA to act as mediator 
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 17
The Mediation Centre of the Panchkula District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) has decided to take up the marital disputes at pre-litigation stage so as to prevent breakup of marriages and split up of families.

A letter in this regard has been sent to the Panchkula Deputy Commissioner of Police by the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM)-cum-Nodal officer of the Mediation Centre, Sunil Chauhan, requesting to send the cases received at the women cell to the centre.

“Several matrimonial disputes reach courts, without any attempt to save the relationships. With thousands of marriages being dissolved every year, the DLSA, Panchkula, following the Supreme Court order of February 22, 2013, has now stepped in to save the institution of marriage. Trained mediators are already working with the DLSA,” said panel advocate Manbir Singh Rathi.

He added, “Two mediation chambers would exclusively look after the matrimonial disputes at pre-litigation stage.”

It was told that the Supreme Court has ordered in the said case that all mediation centres shall be setting up pre-litigation desks or clinics and would make efforts to settle the matrimonial disputes. 

supreme court’s verdict in dowry cases in K Srinivas Rao vs DA Deepa on February 22, 2013

"The criminal courts dealing with the complaint under Section 498 A of the IPC should, at any stage, and particularly before they take up the complaint for hearing, refer the parties to mediation centres if they feel that there exist elements of settlement and both the parties are willing for it"



Cong leaders take part in AICC meeting 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
The leaders of Chandigarh Congress participated in the All India Congress Committee (AICC) meeting in Delhi.

Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) president BB Behl, including Congress leaders Mukesh Bassi, Rampal Sharma, Anu Chatrath, Lalit Joshi along with all district unit presidents and presidents of all frontal organisations of Chandigarh Congress also participated in the meeting.

BB Behl said they would discuss party issues with Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi. The meeting of the Congress presidents and district unit presidents is scheduled to be held on January 18 in Delhi, he said.



F&CC poll: BJP-SAD name candidates
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
The BJP-SAD alliance today named BJP councillor Saurabh Joshi and SAD councillor Malkiat Singh as candidates for the MC’s Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) elections.

The alliance also decided to support nominated councillor Surinder Bahga, who is also contesting the elections. BSP convenor Hafiz Anwar Ul Haq, too, announced support for Bahga. In the MC House, BSP has two councillors.

Meanwhile, a group of eight nominated councillors decided to field MP Kohli and Anoop Sunny Gill as candidates for the elections. Sources said there was resentment among some nominated councillors over these two names. The F&CC is the second-most important committee in the Municipal Corporation, after the MC House.

The Congress is yet to name its candidates. Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee president BB Behl said they had authorised Mayor Harphool Kalyan to decide upon the names. When contacted, the Mayor said they had decided to field only one candidate, whose name would be announced tomorrow.

Sources said the Mayor is in favour of Congress councillor Pardeep Chhabra. Earlier, the party used to field two candidates, but due to the fear of cross voting, they are fielding only one candidate, said sources. Recently, the Congress had lost elections to the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor.

January 18 is the last date to file nomination papers and the elections will be held on January 23. Besides Mayor, there are only five seats in the panel.



Hans Raj Hans casts a spell
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
Punjabi Sufi singer Hans Raj Hans enthralled the audience with his captive singing at the closing ceremony of the Road Safety Week, organised by the Chandigarh Traffic Police.

A “Sufi Night” was organised at St Stephen’s School, Sector 45-B, here. Hans Raj Hans gave a live performance and presented Sufi songs, which were enjoyed by the gathering on the occasion.

His performance on songs from “Kache Dhaage” and sufiana kalaam “rakho meri laaz” dedicated to Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti were applauded by the gathering.

Anil Kumar, UT Home Secretary, was the chief guest at the function. RP Upadhyay, IGP, Chandigarh, expressed the gratitude to the chief guest.



Feed back

Kalagram likely to get a boost

With the change of guard at the North Zone Cultural Centre, the cultural activities at Kalagram, which were below par for quite some time, can hope to look up. Dr RS Gill, the new director, a stalwart, has his job cut out for him with a clear road map to inject life in the Kalagram. Kalagram was silently suffering from lack ideas and initiatives. Dr Gill 's first task should be to create necessary infrastructure on the precincts of Kalagram and provision of an auditorium, on the pattern of Tagore Theatre. It is an immediate need of the hour and should be a priority. Theater lovers in this part of the City Beautiful have been craving for such an auditorium at Kalagram as the open air theatre there is unable to sustain the interest of the audience in monsoon and winter season. Let us hope that he will have his way to give a new and fresh look to Kalagram, which was raised with much fanfare, but got neglected over a period of time.

SC Luthra, MHC Manimajra

Road cries for repairs

At Zirakpur chowk, the road leading to Panchkula is in a bad shape. While coming from Chandigarh, one has to pass through a slip road to reach Kalka-Shimla road, Dhakoli, Baltana and Panchkula. Many vehicles pass through this road. It is bumpy due to big pot holes. This road requires immediate repair.

Sunil Minocha, Panchkula



Philately exhibition begins at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
Busy in taking notes about stamps displayed at the philately exhibition, Chandipex-2014, which began today at Panjab University, Sohan Singla, a student of Bhavan Vidyalaya, and a visitor here, expressed surprise that why the kings of our country used these stamps and inland letters to send information to their near and dear ones; didn't they have e-mails to do so?

The Chandigarh Postal Division in collaboration with the Department of Life Long Learning and Extension, Panjab University, is organising the two-day district-level philately exhibition. As many as 28 exhibitors are participating in the exhibition, of which seven are schoolchildren. The exhibition is also showcasing the Indian history in the shape of stamps. It was inaugurated by the PU Adviser and Secretary to the Vice-Chancellor, RL Kapoor, IAS (retd).

A majority of the students, who visited the exhibition, came to know that stamps and inland letters were used in the ancient times. The students said they were unaware of any such facility of the Postal Department.

Some of the students here said they used to believe that stamps and inland letters were only for collection and not for routine use by the public. Eager to know about the variety of stamps, greeting cards and envelops displayed in the exhibition, the students started taking notes to enhance their knowledge.

Prabal Fakay, a member of the Chandigarh Philatelic Club, and a resident of Panchkula, said children could only revive the passion for stamp collection, which was dying in this age of advanced technology. The Postal Department should make the youth aware of the utility of stamp collection.

Rakesh Walia, another member of the club, who has been collecting stamps for the past 11 years, said it was sad that the Postal Department was not making efforts to develop the hobby of stamp and first day cover collection among students.

Bishan Singh, Senior Superintendent of Post Office, Chandigarh Postal Division, said the department would hold a special workshop on the collection of stamps for schoolchildren tomorrow.



Draw of lots at Bhavan Vidyalaya Junior School today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
After missionary schools, all eyes are now set on the draw of lots for admission to the entry-level class at Bhavan Vidyalaya Junior School in Sector 33, which will be held on the school premises tomorrow.

There will be a tough competition as 1,700 applicants are vying for 100 seats. While nearly 50 seats will be allotted to the general category applicants through the draw of lots, the rest will be given to the reserved quota.

The school has reserved 25 seats for the EWS under the RTE Act and approximately 25 seats for the siblings, alumni and management quota.

Several parents, who have failed to get their wards admitted to any of the top schools in the city so far, are keeping their fingers crossed.

Avinash Kumar, a parent, said: “I applied for my son’s admission to the top four schools of the city, but could not make it to three of them. Now, Bhavan is the last hope.”

Another parent said it was very sad that the city had a few schools that offer quality education. Even in these schools, reserved quotas took away a major chunk of the seats with little to offer for the general category students.

Officials of the school said only single parent would be allowed per application. The parents were advised not to bring children along with them. The process will be fully transparent as the parents will be invited to pick slips from the draw of lots. The proceedings will be videographed, too.

KBDAV-7, too, will also hold the draw of lots on the school premises tomorrow.



Children’s theatre fest kicks off
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
Children’s Theatre Festival began at the Sector 17 Plaza here this afternoon.

On the first day of the festival, four short plays were staged in which 40 students of the government schools participated. These plays were prepared by children themselves during theatre workshops conducted in various government schools in collaboration with the Education Department and the Department of Cultural Affairs.

KK Sharma, Adviser to the Administrator, inaugurated the festival.

Today, students of GMSSS-35 staged two plays -“Kagaz Ki Gudiya” and “Junk Hi Funki Na Koi Kaam Ki” - and GMSSS-15 students staged “Kashmkash”. People were impressed with the performance of the students.

Tomorrow, GMSSS-37 students will stage “Ek Phool Ki Chahat” and “Lalsa”, while GMSSS-15 students will stage “Hum Aise Kyon Nahi” and “Ool Julool ya Jhamela”. The plays are being staged between 12 noon and 2 pm. The festival will continue till January 24. 



PU and college notes

Three-day symposium begins at PU

The second National Student Symposium on Physics (NSSP-2014) of the Indian Association of Physics Teachers (IAPT) began at Panjab University on Friday. The three-day symposium is being organised by the Department of Physics, PU, in collaboration with the IAPT. PU Vice-Chancellor Professor AK Grover inaugurated the symposium. The Vice-Chancellor addressed the students and welcomed the delegates and president of the IAPT Professor HC Pradhan. More than 100 undergraduate and postgraduate students from all over the country are participating in the programme. As many as 15 oral presentations and 35 poster presentations would be made by the students. Besides student presentations, various experts would deliver lectures about the recent developments in physics.

ABVP announces executive council

The Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) on Friday announced its Chandigarh executive council for the current session. The ABVP workers with the newly formed team at the Student Centre of Panjab University on Friday. Tribune Photo: Pradeep Tewari council has 24 members, which include 16 office-bearers and 8 executive members. All council members took an oath to work 24 hours for the issues related to students. North India organising secretary Shree Niwas said the mission of the team would be to work on the issues related to students and highlight various evils of society.
ABVP workers with the newly formed team at the Student Centre of Panjab University on Friday. Tribune Photo: Pradeep Tewari

Public engagement activity

The Department of Geography, Panjab University, and the Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies (CICS) and Global Development Institute, University of Fraser Valley (UVF), Abbotsford, Canada, on Friday organised their third public engagement activity on research project sustainable settlements in India. It was attended by teachers and research scholars from various departments of the university and guests from the CICS India-Chapter, Sector 32. Professor Dhian Kaur and Professor Krishna Mohan from India and Professor Garry Fehr and Professor Satwinder Bains from the UFV, Canada, are the project coordinators. The students, through their presentations, informed the audience about the course on political ecology undertaken by them and compared the education system, evaluation methods, sustainability plans and regional development strategies between India and Canada.

National seminar on business growth

GGDSD College on Friday organised a national seminar on business growth and corporate sustainability. It was inaugurated by eminent scientist Professor Ashok K Vijh, Master of Research, Research Institute of Hydro Quebec, Quebec Montreal, Canada. Professor Lalit K. Bansal, Dean Research, Panjab University, and chairman, USOL, Panjab University, Chandigarh, was the chief guest. In his inaugural address, Professor Vijh highlighted the linkage between technological development and economic development and elaborated that technological developments had their roots in basic sciences. The chief guest urged the teachers and research scholars to engage in growth-oriented research. He also discussed research grants that are available for academic research.

Seminar on women’s self-defence

The Saraswati Group, Gharuan, with the guidance of the Punjab Legal Services Authority, Mohali, organised a seminar on women’s self-defence on the Gharuan campus. BS Handa, expert, Marshal Arts, and his team presented various activities physically and psychologically that are helpful for everyone. Over, 250 girls and women staff members attended the seminar. — TNS



From schools

Draw of lots today

The draw of lots for admission to the entry-level class for general quota of St Mary’s School, Sector 46, will be held on Saturday on the school premises at 3 pm. Only one parent should accompany the child. Those parents who are not present for the draw will not be entertained thereafter. The draw of lots for the Economically Weaker Section and other quota will be on January 20 at 3 pm.

Student excels in exam

Sarvesh Mehtani of Class IX of Bhavan Vidyalaya, Panchkula, displayed exemplary mathematical skills and emerged as the highest scorer in mathematics throughout the nation in the asset exam organised by Educational Initiatives, Ahmedabad. She was conferred with a trophy and cash prize. The school also conducted a multiple intelligence quiz for UKG in the school auditorium. There were 11 rounds based on all type of intelligence. Children thoroughly enjoyed the event.

Lohri celebrated

Lohri was celebrated with great zeal and religious fervour at AKIPS, Mohali. A special assembly was organised where students shared their views and highlighted the significance of the day. A colourful presentation by the students enthralled everybody present. Later, the guest for the occasion Jasdeep Kalra, executive director, lit the bonfire. Students enjoyed the ceremony tossing popcorns, peanuts and rewari on the bonfire. The students also danced around the bonfire to the tune of Lohri songs. — TNS



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