C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



Violators to be challaned from today
Nine series of vehicles without high security registration plates under police scanner
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
Starting tomorrow, the UT traffic police will begin challaning vehicles without high security registration plates (HSRP) of nine series in the city. The offence of using wrong number plate under relevant sections of the Motor Vehicle Act attracts a fine of Rs 3,000 for four-wheelers and Rs 2,000 for two-wheelers.

The orders to start challaning the nine series of vehicles were issued today by the UT traffic police after the Registering and Licensing Authority (RLA) sent a communiqué recently.

In the communication, the RLA stated one-month notice period for affixing of HSRP on vehicles of two more series (CH01 AP and CH01 AW) had been completed. “As such you are requested to start the challaning of vehicles not having HSRP affixed for these series,” stated the communication.

Senior traffic officials issued orders to the DSPs (traffic) and all Inspectors to enforce law and send a monthly report of the number of challans issued.

Last month, the issuance of challans to violators had hit a roadblock, with the UT police asking the RLA the section under which challans could be issued to the vehicle owners not having the HSRP fixed.


IAF to extend runway, upgrade landing aids
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
To cater to the increased air traffic to and from the city, the Air Force will be extending the runway at its Chandigarh airbase and upgrading navigational aids to assist flight operations in adverse weather conditions.

The Chandigarh airfield belongs to the Ministry of Defence, which controls the runway and arid traffic control services, aerodrome locator beacon and approach lights, while the instrument landing system (ILS), a high frequency omni-directional range and distance measuring equipment, is provided and maintained by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). These facilities are used both by the Air Force and the civilian enclave attached to it.

Air Force officials said the runway resurfacing work was planned for Chandigarh in the near future and the dates would be announced shortly. The work includes extension of the existing runway length and also resurfacing the runway and the aircraft manoeuvering area.

The condition of the runway’s surface has deteriorated due to the phenomenal increase in the quantum of flying operations at the base. In the recent past, a concentrated and dedicated runway maintenance plan had been executed at the base.

In addition, the airfield lighting system will also be upgraded as part of the project to modernise the airfield infrastructure. This will include replacement of Category-I ILS owned by the AAI with the more advanced Category-II ILS that will belong to the Air Force. The upgraded runway lights will be compatible with the new ILS, which will facilitate landing of aircraft when the visibility is very low.

Runway resurfacing work planned

Air Force officials said the runway resurfacing work was planned for Chandigarh in the near future and the dates would be announced shortly. The work includes extension of the existing runway length and also resurfacing the runway and the aircraft manoeuvering area.



UT traffic police draft proposal restricts use of red beacon
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
UT Administrator, the Chief Justice and Judges of the Punjab and Haryana High Court will be the only ones among the city top posts authorised to adorn red beacon atop their official vehicles with a flasher while on duty.

The UT Adviser and the UT Inspector General of Police will be authorised to have a red beacon on their vehicle, but without a flasher. These are some of the recommendations sent by the UT traffic police to the UT Administration in a detailed proposal for the use of red beacons in the city.

The detailed proposal has been formulated keeping in view the Supreme Court’s judgment limiting the use of red beacons for high officials in the city.

Following the Supreme Court guidelines to draft a fresh notification for the use of red and blue beacons atop vehicles, the Chandigarh Traffic Police have recommended blue beacons for vehicles of civil officials who are responsible for maintaining law and order as they require unhindered access to the road for performance of their duties. The officials who will be authorised for a blue beacon include the Home Secretary, the Deputy Commissioner and three Sub Divisional Magistrates.

Besides, all police officials assigned duties of emergency/quick response, escorts, pilots, law and order as well as police vehicles requiring unhindered access to the road for duty will be authorised to have a blue beacon or blue and orange light atop their vehicles. These include vehicles of the Chandigarh Traffic Police and the Police Control Room.

In addition, repair vans of the Electricity Department responsible for the maintenance of automatic traffic control lights and of the electricity supply to the three major hospitals, including the PGI, GMSH -16 and the GMCH- 32 will also be authorised for a blue beacon as they fall under the category of emergency response system. All ambulances and fire tenders also fall under this category and will be authorised a blue beacon after they get a permit from the UT SSP (traffic and security).

“Following the Supreme Court guidelines limiting the use of red beacons, we have sent a detailed proposal to the UT Administration to frame a new notification in this regard,” said UT SSP (Traffic) Maneesh Chaudhery.



Kajauli waterworks
City, Mohali’s water woes come to an end
Damaged sluice valve replaced
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Morinda, February 3
After replacing the damaged sluice valve of Phase I and II pipelines of the Kajauli Waterworks, the Punjab Water Supply and Sewerage Board (PWSSB) resumed the water supply in the Phase 1, II, III and IV pipelines, this morning.

“Usual supply of 80 MGD water to Chandigarh and Mohali town was resumed at 7.30 am today”, RP Gupta, Executive Engineer of the PWSSB, said while inspecting the site.

The water supply was suspended after a sluice valve, connecting the pipelines with common header, was damaged on Sunday evening.

Workers at the site claimed that water gushed out and rose to a level of over 50 metres. “Both pump houses were filled with water. Fortunately, no damage was done to the equipment there”, said a worker there.

Gupta said the valve was nearly 30 years old and needed to be replaced. “It has been replaced with a new one, now”, he said.

Gupta further said that more than 50 officials worked the whole night to replace the valve after stopping the flow of water from the pipelines. “The water in the pump houses was pumped out before the supply was resumed this morning”, said Gupta.

Besides the sluice valve that has been replaced, the other six valves are also old and there are chances of them giving way in future.

The officials at the site admitted that such a situation could arise again.

“The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation (which gives Rs 1.60 crore annually to PWSSB for the maintenance of pipelines) has been apprised of the risk. These valves need to be changed soon”, said Gupta.

The MC officials also visited the site to take stock of the situation.

“Right now, everything is in order here”, said RC Diwan, Superintending Engineer (public health), MC, Chandigarh.

He admitted that the valves installed in Phase I and II pipelines were very old and should be replaced. “There are over 20 such valves in both pipelines”, added Diwan.



A first: Mall near Kharar to run bus service in Tricity to ease congestion
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 3
To ease congestion outside its premises, the management of the upcoming mall, The North Country Mall, located along the Mohali-Kharar highway near Balongi village, has announced to run their own shuttle bus service in Tricity for their customers, free of cost. The mall is scheduled to be inaugurated on February 14.

At least two luxury buses will be pressed into service initially, to bring the customers from Mohali, Chandigarh and parts of Panchkula to the mall.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, Praveen Singh, the marketing manager of the mall, said that they had planned to run at least two air-conditioned buses, equipped with LCDs and other luxuries, in the Tricity to facilitate their customers.

"For the first time, we are providing this kind of service to the Tricity residents. After some time, we will increase the number of buses. This

will also be our unique selling point (USP)", said Praveen claiming that the other USP will be their food court which will be the second largest in the country.

He claimed that the mall was one of the biggest malls in the northern region and was 1.5 times bigger than Elante mall. “It will have a nine screen multiplex with a total capacity of 1,800 persons”, he said.


  • The mall spread over 22 acre of land has 20 lakh sq ft built up area
  • To have 250 shops and more than 10 anchor stores
  • A banquet hall with a capacity of 2,000 persons
  • Parking area for 3,000 four-wheelers in two basements and a surface car parking
  • Three open plazas for various activities
  • Three main entrances
  • Out of nine cinemas, two screens will be dedicated to 'Gold Class'.



PCA notice to Healthyway owner
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
The Police Complaints Authority (PCA) has issued a notice to the owner of Healthyway Immigrations, Amit Kakkar, to appear before the bench on the next hearing in connection with the extortion complaint filed by him against former UT SSP and the others.

The PCA has asked him to appear before the bench on March 19 to file evidence, failing which the complaint will be disposed of ex parte.

Amit Kakkar, who is an accused in immigrations frauds across the tricity, has filed a complaint with the PCA against former UT SSP, two DSPs, two inspectors and six sub-inspectors.

“You are directed to appear in person for filing evidence in connection with the complaint filed by you before the PCA. If you fail to do so, the complaint will be disposed of ex parte,” read the notice.

Kakkar alleged that certain senior rank police officers, including former UT SSP Naunihal Singh, extorted Rs 4 crore from him in the past three years.

Kakkar, who was booked in different cases of fraud after more than 350 residents of the city and neighbouring states filed complaints against him, is out on bail.

He also submitted a complaint to UT IGP RP Upadhyaya last month.

Today, Kakkar levelled allegations against one more DSP for having close links with another immigration company owner and threatening him.

Sources said Karan Arora, owner of Planet Bulls, has also filed a complaint against Amit Kakkar with the Income Tax Department. It has been alleged that Kakkar has been evading income tax in property sale deeds.

'Kakkar is a fraudster'

Former SBI chief bank manager AC Dhawan, who has been accused of facilitating a bribe deal for police officers by Kakkar, has also sent an email to the UT IGP, refuting all allegations against him.

“It has come to my notice that I have arranged payments of bribe to the police authorities which is false. Amit Kakkar is my nephew and the truth is that he has taken loans from private banks and wanted to repay the amount. Amit Kakkar borrowed Rs 1 crore from one bank and Rs 1.5 from another. He asked for financial help from me following which he decided to sell his properties, which were actually mortgaged. The complainants in the case were paid the amount by their staff members after verification of records,” he stated. Dhawan also stated that the Income Tax authorities had raided the company in the past and huge amounts were recovered following which a huge penalty was imposed. The allegations levelled by Kakkar against me are baseless,” he stated.

In trouble

Owner of Healthyway Immigrations Amit Kakkar has filed a complaint with the Police Complaints Authority against former UT SSP, two DSPs, two inspectors and six sub-inspectors. He alleged that the officers had extorted ~4 crore from him in the past three years.



Intense efforts needed to curb begging
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Begging has always been a neglected issue in the city. The authorities have failed to curb the peril. Instances of people and children seen begging are on the rise. Chandigarh Tribune spoke to a cross-section of people on this issue who were of the view that begging should be strictly prohibited. Children involved in begging should be rehabilitated and child labour should be discouraged or prevented.

Chandigarh, February 3
If curbing the menace of begging in the City Beautiful is a case, the authorities concerned are turning a blind eye to the illegal practice. A five-year-old project to rehabilitate the children involved in begging and child labour has reached nowhere. The project was started by former DPI SK Setia in 2008. It aimed at bringing the children into mainstream education.

The project has not only been consigned to files, but also no official in the Education Department was aware of it.

“The project stands nowhere. The children enrolled under the project have either ran away or shifted their base somewhere else,” said an official of the UT Education Department.

The project was to identify the children who are forced to do child labour or begging and admit them to various schools. According to reports, over 1,400 children were rescued under this project and were later admitted to various schools. Innovative classes were meant to teach children after school hours. Here, these children were to be given free food.

“I don't know about its present status. However, we have enrolled a good number of children under the project. Moreover, there was a public support and youngsters came forward to help us in identifying such children. Basic education is every child's fundamental right and one should think seriously on this," said Setia.

Residents speak

Increase in the number of beggars has become a menace in the city. It also gives a bad impression to visitors from outside. The authorities should take strong action against the people who are involved in begging.

Vipin Kumar, a resident of Sector 38

The police should zero in on the persons who are involved in begging rackets. The children should be sent to schools and their identities should be verified properly. A strong step by the police will help in curbing the peril.

Jasmeet Kaur , Manager at a private company.

The authorities need to wake up and take strong action. Begging is not only restricted to collecting money, but it is also a racket. There are several major questions that so far have been left unanswered by the authorities.

Avtar Singh, city-based businessman

Families involved in begging should be verified by the police. If needed, they should be sensitised to the issue. Otherwise, the recent increase in the number of beggars will lead to a complex problem.

Dr Gurcharan Singh Gill, assistant professor at SGGS College

Beggars can be seen approaching drivers and passers-by for alms on major road intersections, giving a tough time to the commuters. They not only create nuisance for motorists, but also pose a serious security threat. The issue needs immediate attention of the authorities concerned.

Dr Ajay Gularia, Panjab University

Various NGOs operating in the city should come forward and volunteer to check the problem. Young people should take the initiative and identify such families that need support.

Anjali Sardana, branch director, Manav Mangal School

Poor families should be given their right. The families coming from other cities should be identified and sent back to their native places.

Vinod Kumar, shopkeeper

Children involved in begging should be rescued and sent to schools. Every child has the right to education. Family members who force their children into this profession should be punished.

Mona Udainiya, student

Help from local NGO

“Vatsaal Chaya”, a city-based NGO, is working towards improving the condition of such children involved in various activities. Members of the NGO identify children from the slum areas working as domestic help or rag-pickers and provide them with free education in two shifts. The group functions from a government school in Sector 8 and includes young volunteers. Till now, over 170 students, who were beggars, were taught under this project. “The NGO works for children who are deprived of primary education. We enrolled several children, who were in separate sessions. Young volunteers join us every month to contribute their share in this noble cause,” said Sangita Vardhan, head of “Vatsaal Chaya”.


Begging is a cognisable offence under the Beggary Act and the police should arrest those involved in the practice. We can send these children to homes for the destitute. A few years ago, some beggars were arrested under the Act. I have written to the IGP, Chandigarh, to direct the police officials to take appropriate action under the Act.

TD Jogpal, director, Social Welfare, UT



Bring site clearances under Right to Service Act, say industrialists
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 3
Fed up with the lackadaisical and indifferent attitude of authorities in giving certain clearances, local industrialists have demanded the state government to bring these services under the Right to Service Act (RTS).

In its representation to the Punjab Deputy Chief Minister, Sukhbir Singh Badal, the members of Mohali Industries and Commerce Association (MICA) have demanded that the site clearances for Change of Land Use (CLU)/conversion cases to be brought under the RTS Act.

“The industrialists in Mohali are very disappointed over the indifference attitude of the authorities’ concerned towards implementing the rules, which were laid down to bring some life to the dull industrial scenario in the town. It is very surprising to us that even though several industry-friendly policies and notifications have been issued, yet it becomes impossible for the industrialists to get speedy clearances,” said Nikhil Saraf, president of MICA.

Saraf said the industrialists face long delays in giving site clearances for conversion/CLU cases which prove to be regressive and counterproductive for getting investors in Punjab.

“Under the RTS Act, the government has provided time limits for clearing building plans, but how can applicant submit building plans, if the site clearance has been delayed or is pending from months and years,” said Saraf.

He added that during its recent innovative Progressive Punjab Investors Meet, the Punjab Government had showed willingness and commitment for developing industry. The red tapism has to be checked only by bringing these services under the RTS Act.

For all round development, it is important that medium and small (SME’s) investors should also have same facilities to set up enterprises as the big houses are being offered, he added.

Notably, more than 70 per cent of industrial area in the Mohali district has been lying vacant. 



Fake IPS also posed as Army officer
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
Arrested in a cheating case, fake IPS officer Ravi Kant had also posed as an Army officer. Police investigations revealed that the accused told everybody that he belonged to the Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC). Ravi Kant was booked under Section 171 of IPC (wearing garb or carrying token used by public servant with fraudulent intent) and 420 (cheating 420) on Saturday. It was learnt that Ravi Kant posed as the Captain of Armed Forces Medical College.

Ravi Kant's father retired as a mechanic from the Navy and is now with the Customs Department at Goa. He was on a clerical post in the department. Kant had claimed that he was posted as the Additional DCP, Economic Offences Wing, Delhi. Ravi Kant claimed that he came to Chandigarh for 
a course.

The police said the accused confessed to have taken Rs 1 lakh each from Inderjit Singh, Vishnu and Balwant for employing them with the Haryana Police. Inderjit Singh from Rewari (Haryana), Balwant of Narnaul and Vishnu of Nangal Choudhary gave the money to the fake IPS officer. The accused had taken photocopies of qualification certificates and photographs of the candidates, which had also been recovered from him. The motive of the accused was to get money from innocent people on the pretext of providing them jobs in the Army.

Bag snatched

Amarjit Kaur of Dashmesh Nagar, Zirakpur, alleged that an unidentified person snatched her bag containing Rs 8,000 in cash and some documents near Janj Ghar, Sector 23, on February 2. The woman said she was on foot.

In his complaint, Gurdit Pal Singh residing at Block No. 1 of boys' hostel in Panjab University, reported that someone had stolen his laptop on February 1. A resident of Sector 9, Munish Kumar, reported to the police that someone had stolen a battery from his Tata 407 CH-01-TA-6423 parked near Industrial Area on February 1.

Man gets 5-yr term

The Court of Additional District and Sessions Judge, Shalini Nagpal, today sentenced a man to a five-year imprisonment in a drug case. The court convicted Chotu Ram and also imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on him. He was arrested on July 2, 2013, from the ISBT.

Servant flees with cash

A Sector 22 resident, Darshan Singh, reported to the police that his servant Ravi took away Rs 50,000 in cash from his Maruti car. A case has been registered.



Was implicated in a false case, says Rathore
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 3
Former Haryana Director General of Police (DGP) SPS Rathore today stated that Girhotras connived with Anand Prakash, father of Ruchika's friend to implicate him in a false case. Rathore had filed a defamation case seeking inclusion of Section 306 (abetment to suicide). He also produced evidence establishing his claim. Rathore's cross-examination ended today.

Former Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Devi Singh also deposed before the court saying he had only filed the chargesheet and that the probe was conducted by the other officers.

Rathore's counsel Ajay Kaushik said, "Rathore wanted to speak up his mind in the court and not in front of mediapersons."

Rathore had accused media houses of helping Anand Prakash. He said the media projected a picture which Anand Prakash wanted.

On the last hearing of the case, Rathore, accused of molesting 14-year-old tennis player Ruchika Girhotra, submitted an additional affidavit in the court stating that Anand Prakash, father of the victim's friend Aradhna, was fighting the battle to take political mileage.

He said he had to face harassment and even undergo imprisonment because of Anand.

Ruchika Girhotra had committed suicide three years after her molestation in 1990.



Hyundai Motors, KLG Hyundai penalised
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
Hyundai Motor India Ltd and KLG Hyundai have been penalised for selling a car with manufacturing defect and failing to repair the problem. District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed the opposite parties to pay Rs 1 lakh as compensation to the complainant for mental agony.

The complainant purchased a Verna car having two years warranty. Since day 1, the car encountered a problem of pulling towards the left hand side. When the problem was brought to the notice of the opposite parties, the complainant was told that with the passage of time the problem will subside.

The problem persisted even after the first service of the vehicle and despite getting the wheel aligned. A written complaint was sent to Hyundai Motor India Ltd. After inspection, the company gave a report stating that, “Uneven wear was found on one side of the tyres due to abnormal force. No manufacturing defect was found in the tyre.”

The forum referred the case to Head, Mechanical Engineering Department, PEC University of Technology, to constitute a panel of experts for the inspection of the car to check the defect mentioned in the complaint, for which the fee was to be paid by the complainant.

The committee after, perusal of records, inspection and test drive was of the opinion that the vehicle in question was pulling on to the left hand side of the vehicle while driving. The wear and tear of the tyres was not normal and proper. The vehicle seemed to have a manufacturing defect.

The forum directed the parties to replace the car with a brand new car, pay a sum of Rs 22,472 to the complainant, which she had paid to the PEC University of Technology.



World Cancer Day
PGI experts share changing role of pathologists

Chandigarh, February 3
Marking World Cancer Day, experts at the PGIMER shared that the role of pathologists in cancer diagnosis had now enhanced to an extent that through biopsies, the severity of cancer tumors and chances of survival of patients could also be determined. The techniques available at the PGIMER can also, in certain cases, assess the efficacy of medicines in treating the cancer tumours, said Dr BD Radotra, from the Department of Histopathology, PGIMER, while addressing the media today.

The Department of Histopathology is also going to hold a three-day Continuous Medical Education (CME) programme on the same topic starting February 6.

The average age of developing breast cancer has shifted from 50-70 years to 30-50 years and cancer in the young tends to be more aggressive in the country, the experts said.

“In recent times, the core needle biopsy is a preferable method for diagnosis of a breast lump. Core needle biopsy is an accurate, quick investigation which does not involve extensive surgery and has very low chances of infection. The CME will discuss the role of core biopsy in breast cancer diagnosis.”

Also, with the help of new potent chemotherapeutic agents, the cure rate of blood cancer is increasing. — TNS



AAP yet to finalise candidates
Says still scrutinising applications of ticket aspirants, removes list of 31 candidates from webstite
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today clarified that the list of 31 probable candidates displayed by the party on its official website for the Lok Sabha elections from Chandigarh seat was not final. The party stated that forms submitted by ticket aspirants were being scrutinised.

In a press release, the party's spokesperson stated that the applications of many other candidates were being scanned.

A large number of applications are still being scrutinised and will be uploaded in the next few days.

The party has also removed the list from the website. AAP's Chandigarh unit observer Rajeev Godara said forms filled in by residents will be taken into consideration and those will be uploaded on the website.

Cong to announce candidate

Senior Congress leaders said the high command would announce the name of the candidate by February-end or the first week of March. "In the constituencies of sitting MPs such as Chandigarh, the party will announce candidates in the second phase," they said.



Lok Sabha poll: BJP goes the Cong way
Tribune News Service

BJP leaders at the UT Guest House. Tribune photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, February 3
Following in the footsteps of the Congress, the BJP has invited applications from party workers interested in contesting the Lok Sabha elections. At a meeting, it was decided that the workers could file applications in the BJP office at Sector 33 till 5 pm on February 5.

They were asked to deposit Rs 11,000. Senior leaders said after the rift between three ticket contenders, BJP president Sanjay Tandon, former MP Satya Pal Jain and senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan, came to the fore, they had decided to give every worker a chance.

In the last meeting on January 29, the workers had exchanged blows. They had suggested four names, city BJP president Sanjay Tandon, former MP Satya Pal Jain, former Union Minister Harmohan Dhawan and Bollywood actor Kirron Kher.

Selection of candidate

Before the election committee meeting at the UT Guest House, Sector 6 on Monday, BJP national secretary Aarti Mehra phoned office-bearers, district presidents and general secretaries asking them to give three names.



Officer gets Sena Medal for gallantry
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
Major Jasjit Singh Bajwa, a city resident, has been conferred the Sena Medal (Gallantry) for his conduct in counter-terrorist operations in Jammu and Kashmir. An alumnus of Guru Nanak Public School, Sector 36, and SD College, Sector 32, he was commissioned into the Regiment of Artillery in September 2009 and is presently serving with the Rashtriya Rifles.

An operation based on own human Intelligence systematically built over time by Maj (then Capt) Bajwa led to apprehension of the longest surviving Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist of A++ category in a most daring manner in September 2013. On receiving information, the officer cordoned off the area and spotted a terrorist along with an accomplice. The terrorists tried to escape and in the ensuing gunfight the officer was able to close on to the terrorist and as he was trying to load his under-barrel grenade launcher to fire upon the troops, the officer overpowered him.



LS poll
Leaders make most of social networking sites

Chandigarh, February 3
Keeping in mind the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, leaders of all prominent parties of Chandigarh are increasing their activities on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, etc., to establish direct contact with voters.

In this line, former city MP and chairman of the BJP’s National Committee on Legal and Election Commission Issues Satya Pal Jain has crossed the 1 lakh followers’ mark on his official Facebook page.

With 1,01,717 followers on his Facebook page, Satya Pal Jain has the highest number of Facebook followers among the leaders of Chandigarh. He is followed by sitting Congress MP Pawan Kumar Bansal with 58,808 followers, former Union Minister and senior BJP leader Harmohan Dhawan with 51,969 followers, city BJP president Sanjay Tandon with 36,060 followers and BSP leader Jannat Jahan with 10,543 followers.

Recently, Bansal, Jain and Dhawan had even complained to the UT Police about abnormal increase of ‘likes’ on their Facebook pages. All these leaders had suspected that it was done to malign their image. — TNS



Price hike fuels residents’ worries

Chandigarh, February 3
The rising prices of fuel have burnt a hole in the pocket of the common man. The price of petrol has shot up by Rs 5 while that of diesel has gone up by Rs 7 since January last year. From Rs 68.13 a litre in January 2013, the price of petrol has increased to Rs 73.44 a litre. The price of diesel, meanwhile, rose from Rs 48.38 to Rs 55.90. As the prices are being revised every month, residents are in a fix. The petrol and diesel prices have been revised 13-14 times in the past one year.

"The hike affects transportation and increases the cost of essential commodities," said a city-based industrialist. The residents said the annual increase in their income was proportionate to the increase in cost of these essentials. They said the Administration should bring down taxes. — TNS



Mohali-Landran road closed to traffic
Our Correspondent

Mohali, February 3
The Mohali-Landran road will be closed to traffic for the next five days on account of felling of trees for the widening of the road. SSP Indermohan Singh said frequent traffic jams were witnessed on the Landran-T point.

"Residents had been demanding that the road be widened to ease congestion," he said. The SSP said the traffic coming from the Patiala-Rajpura side had been diverted towards Zirakpur and vehicles coming from Sirhind to Mohali had been diverted towards Chunni through Morinda-Kharar. "Commuters going from Mohali to Patiala and Rajpura will have to go through Zirakpur and those going to Sirhind will have to go through Kharar and Morinda," he stated.



PU & college notes
Placement drive for CAs on Feb17-18
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India will hold its campus placement drive on February 17-18. As many as 165 candidates, who recently completed their chartered accountancy, will participate in the programme. Some of the leading names in the industry have confirmed their participation in the drive. CA Atul Kumar Gupta, chief coordinator of Chandigarh, said, “This is an excellent opportunity for Indian companies to recruit the best of students in the field of accountancy.”

Chef competition

A chef competition concluded at the Dr Ambedkar Institute of Hotel Management on Monday. Dilshad Singh Bhatia was adjudged the ‘best chef of the day’. The students were judged on the basis of their delicacy, presentation, aroma and hygiene by CM Bhan, principal, Chitkara Institute of Hotel Management and Hometel Chief Chef Dipayan.

Ten students were shortlisted for the competition and their task was to prepare a three-course continental menu.

Placement drive

Desh Bhagat University organised a placement week. The placement drive was for the students of MCA and B.Tech (CSE, IT). During the placement week, IT companies, including Altruist Technologies, IDS InfoTech Limited, Security Weaver, Catalyst One, Macreel Info Soft Pvt. Ltd. Participated in the event. These companies conducted their selection processes, which included written tests followed by technical and HR rounds.



Perils of free chatting application
Cyber expert says children fall victim to cyber bullying; asks parents to keep tab
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 3
For Aania (name changed), a student of Class IX, the world came crashing down when she saw her photograph — uploaded on a free chat application on her mobile phone — adorning the notice board at her school. She ended up becoming a victim of bullying.

Aania’s case is not the lone of its kind. Several such cases have come to the fore.

“Several such cases are being reported on a daily basis,” said Rakshit Tandon, advisor, cyber crime unit, Uttar Pradesh and Gurgaon police.

Tandon was educating students on the perils of internet and free chat applications during a seminar ‘Surf Safe’ at The Gurukul School, Sector 20, today.

“Internet is a platform to gain information on every subject. Children use it for research, knowledge, connecting with friends, sharing information and entertainment. However, it has become important to train children to reap maximum benefits from the internet while not compromising on their safety and security,” he added.

Pointing towards the spurt in cyber crime cases, Tandon said, “There were nearly 420 cases of cyber crime in 2009, while the same increased to 2,876 in 2012. In 2011, of 1,630 such cases, 883 pertained to college students and 41 to school students.”

Stating that safety of children was of utmost importance in today’s world, Tandon said, “Children start surfing the internet at a young age. Parents need to keep a watchful eye on their activities. Children may feel that they are secure and nobody’s watching them on free chat sites. Only limited information should be shared as it is being misused and leads to cyber crime,” added Tandon.

The seminar not only educated students on cyber defamation, cyber stalking and cyber bullying but also on ways to conceal their personal information.

“IT and cyber laws have been framed, which severely punish hackers when found guilty. This will help bring down such cases,” he added.

School principal Harsimran Kaur said the seminar had made students aware about cyber crimes.



National client counselling competition held at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
The Third National Client Counselling Competition-2014 for the ‘Dr Gurdial Singh Dhillon Memorial’ Running Trophy began at the University Institute of Legal Studies (UILS), Panjab University, today.

On the first day, an orientation session was attended by 22 teams from law colleges across the country. The teams were addressed by UILS director Prof Sangeeta Bhalla.

The event commenced with preliminary rounds. The competition simulated a law office consultation wherein two students posing as lawyers were presented a case.

Each team interviewed a client, being played by student volunteers from the host institute.

The client’s case pertained to Intellectual Property Laws and Consumer Protection Law. The preliminary rounds were judged by practicing lawyers, teachers and alumni of the institute.

The teams included National University of Advanced Legal Studies, Kochi; National Law School of India University, Bangalore; National Law University Institute, Bhopal; National Law University (NLU), Odisha; Ram Manohar Lohiya National Law University, Lucknow; NLU, Jodhpur; Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar; Amity Law School, Noida; Institute of Law, Nirma University; Indian Law Society’s Law College, Pune; VIPS, Guru Gobind Singh IP University, Law Centre - 1, Faculty of Law, Delhi University; University of Rajasthan; PU Department of Laws; Army Institute of Law, Mohali; Christ University; Symbiosis Law School, Pune; Kurukshetra University; GNDU, Jalandhar; ITM Law School, Gurgaon and SVKM Pravin Gandhi.

The semi-final and final rounds will be held on February 4.



from schools
Wishing luck for exams

Chandigarh: To wish them luck for the forthcoming board examinations, a ‘tilak ceremony’ was organised for the Class X students of The Tribune Model School on Monday. Principal Vandana Saxena applied tilak to the students. It was a nostalgic moment for the students of Class X.

Handwriting competition

A handwriting competition was organised for the students of primary classes at Kids-R-Kids School, Sector 42, on Monday. Students were judged for correct spacing between letters, easy recognition, punctuation, formation and use of lines in writing English and Hindi. The competition was organised to help students improve their handwriting.

Farewell function

A farewell function was organised for the students of Class XII at St. Xavier`s Senior Secondary School on Monday. The programme commenced with a short prayer by the deputy director of the school, VV De Rozario. Momentos and a title each were given to the outgoing students. This was followed by a sumptuous meal and a dance session. Principal Mervin West lauded the efforts of students for putting up the show. The programme was anchored by Ishita, Brinda and Prabhleen, students of Class XI.

Basant Panchami celebrated

Basant Panchami was celebrated at Century Public School, Naya Gaon, today. The programme began with the recital of Saraswati Vandana. A kite-flying competition was organised for the boy students of the senior section, while the girl students took part in the sweet rice-making contest. The students of the junior wing took part in the kite making and kite decoration competitions.

Annual appreciation day

To recognise the achievements of young achievers, the Annual Appreciation Day was organised at Manav Mangal High School, Sector 21, on Monday. The programme commenced with a prayer to Lord Ganesha. The students of Class II performed the Ganesh Vandana.

Bhavan Vidyalaya students shine

Panchkula: On the 151st birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, a smriti samaroh was organised by St. Vivekananda Millenium School, Pinjore, As many as 17 schools from the Tricity participated in various competitions. The students of Bhavan Vidyalaya, Panchkula, bagged the first position in the fancy dress and yoga competitions, while they came second in the mug painting contest.

Creative activity

The students of Class IV of DC Model Senior Secondary School participated in creative activity by making colourful birds with ice-cream sticks. The uniqueness of the activity was the colour concept used by the students.

Declamation contest

MOHALI: The Environment Protection Society, Mohali, organised a declamation contest on the “Importance of Wetlands and Agriculture” at St. Soldier International Convent School, on February 1. Students from various schools participated in the contest. Golden Bells Public School, Sector 77, Mohali, won the overall second position in the contest. — TNS



Winter timings: Teachers union to meet DPI on Feb 6
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 3
Irked at the UT Education Department’s move of extending the school timings for winter till March 31, the Government Teachers Union has decided to take up the issue with the director of public instructions (DPI) on February 6.

Recently, the Education Department had sent a communication stating that the school timings for winter will be from 8.40am to 2.40pm instead of 8am to 2pm. Earlier, the timings were applicable till January 31.

The teachers’ union is of the opinion that as the winter season is about to end, the department should not extend the school timings.

The Government Teachers Union representative Vinod Kumar said, “We will request the authorities concerned to review the timings in the meeting.”

The teachers union is also mulling to raise the issue of execution of the fixation of the notional policy, approved in 2011. Though the Education Department has implemented it on teachers, who are on deputation from Punjab, the UT cadre is yet to be covered under it.

The promotion cases of the headmasters and headmistress, which are pending since last year, will also be taken up in the meeting.



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