C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Panchayat takes eunuchs head-on
Tells villagers to pay them only Rs 2,100 on special occasions
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
After receiving a number of complaints from villagers regarding "extortion" by eunuchs, the gram panchayat of Khuda Ali Sher has decided that they will only give Rs 2,100 to eunuchs on occasions such as weddings and birth.

The panchayat has displayed boards at various spots in the village, informing the residents about its decision.

Hukum Chand, sarpanch of Khuda Ali Sher village, said in the recent panchayat elections, one of the main demands of the villagers was to check "extortion" by eunuchs in the village.

After being elected sarpanch, he tabled this issue at the first meeting of the panchayat, held this month. The proposal was passed by the members.

He said they had forwarded a copy of their decision to the Block Development and Panchayat Officer (BDPO) and the Chandigarh police. "If eunuchs demand more money from the villagers, we will get an FIR lodged against them," he said.

Ravinder Singh, a resident of Khuda Ali Sher who got married last year, said after his marriage, eunuchs visited his home, but refused to accept his offer of Rs 5,100. They were demanding Rs 31,000. "As I was already under a financial burden, it was difficult for me to pay such a heavy amount to them. Finally, with the help of villagers, the matter was settled for Rs 11,000," he said.

Echoing similar views, Sunita, another villager, said if people fail to pay them the demanded amount, eunuchs hurl abuses at them and indulge in obscene gestures. Left with no option, people have to pay the demanded amount to the eunuchs. However, the panchayat decision had given them hope against this exploitation.

What the MP HC observed

The Madhya Pradesh High Court had recently rejected a petition seeking a ban on the alleged extortion activities of transgenders. While rejecting the petition, the High Court observed, “It is unfortunate that those who are in a position to offer relief to this class come seeking legal help by invoking the Constitution to make things more difficult for the already suppressed and harassed class.”

What the eunuchs say

Madhu Mahant, head of the eunuch community in Chandigarh, says they never force residents to give them more money. "Sometimes fake eunuchs extort money from residents in our name. We have caught a number of fake eunuchs in the recent past," Madhu said.



More men show up at PGI’s infertility clinic, courtesy rising awareness
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
In what can be attributed to increased faith in treatment and acceptability among men, the number of couples showing up at the PGI’s male infertility clinic has doubled in the past decade.

Having tried all sorts of self-medications and “misleading advertisements”, which fail to cure the problem, 60 to 100 new patients turn up at the weekly clinic now against 30 to 50 cases 10 years ago, says Dr SK Singh, Professor, Department of Urology, PGI.

Besides, three or four new couples show up in each OPD of the Urology Department with similar complaints, said another doctor.

Disappointed over the inefficiency of self-medication, a number of couples tend to fight in front of doctors in the OPD, failing to realise that this problem can be cured with medication, surgery or injections in a majority of the cases, says Dr Santosh Kumar, Assistant Professor in the same department.

Mostly, such problems emerge within one or two years of the marriage.

“While until a few years ago, women had to shoulder the blame for being childless despite male infertility being the real cause, they are now more independent, vocal and demanding. In 50 per cent of the cases, men are often responsible for couples being childless. Besides, delayed marriages and adopting remedies other than medical treatment lead to such conflicts among couples,” says Dr Santosh Kumar.

Common causes

Delayed marriages, self-medication, stress and declining self-confidence are among the common causes of infertility. According to experts, couples face fewer problems if they plan to have children in the 18-35 age group. The problems of infertility remain as less as 15 per cent in this age group.


Proper medication and counselling and in certain cases surgery can cure the problem.

Couples prefer to visit gynaecologists

Even though the acceptability among men regarding male infertility being the reason behind couples being childless has increased, couples first prefer to visit gynaecologists. This indicates that they presume that the problem lies with women. 



Cop caught taking bribe gives police the slip
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
A day after a traffic constable was caught taking a bribe of Rs 300 in a trap laid by his seniors, the constable is on the run. Raids are being conducted to arrest the constable, Tejinder Singh.

DSP (Traffic) Satish Kumar received a complaint against Tejinder Singh that he was taking money from erring motorists for letting them off without issuing challans.

The DSP sent a person with three currency notes of Rs 100 bearing signatures. The person, who posed as a motorist, was intercepted by the constable for a traffic violation. He offered Rs 300 to the Tejinder Singh. The constable took the money and was caught by the DSP.

The constable was handed over to officials of the Sector 11 police station. However, he gave them the slip.

While he was caught in the afternoon and handed over to the traffic police staff, it was five hours later at 8.30 pm that DSP (Central) Ashish Kapoor received a formal complaint against him and a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act was registered. The constable thus got enough time to flee.

“We have registered a case and efforts are on to arrest him,” said the DSP.



Jeweller gets extortion letter
Asked to pay Rs 6 cr
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
A Sector 35-based jeweller, Manoj Jain, has received an extortion letter asking him to pay Rs 6 crore. The letter states that if the jeweller fails to do so, his son will be kidnapped.

The UT police have beefed up security near the jeweller’s residence and efforts are on to identify the accused.

The letter, written in Punjabi, has reportedly been sent by a militant organisation active in Punjab.

The letter was received two days ago and the sender had given two days to Jain to pay the amount.

The police suspect the letter to be a mischievous act on the part of some miscreants. A daily diary report was lodged at the Sector 36 police station. Jain has a 13-year-old son.

DSP (South) Surjeet Malik said investigations were on.


Chandigarh votes 2014
Cong to begin campaign on Sunday 
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
Finally, the Congress has also decided to start campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections in the city.

To counter extensive election campaigns of the BJP, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the BSP, the Congress will now launch a citywide ‘padyatra’ programme.

The Congress will start ‘padyatra’ from the Slum Rehabilitation Colony at Dhanas on Sunday (March 2).

To finalise the ‘padyatra’ schedule for March, the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) president, BB Behl, and sitting Congress MP Pawan Kumar Bansal, have called a meeting of the party office-bearers, MC Councillors and other senior Congress leaders, tomorrow. The meeting will be held at Congress Bhawan in Sector 35, at 3 pm.

When contacted, Behl said they had decided to start the programme on Sunday from the Slum Rehabilitation Colony at Dhanas because it was the major step taken by the Congress government to rehabilitate slum dwellers.

Another Congress leader Mukesh Bassi, who is also an MC councillor, said with the ‘padyatra’ campaign they will go from door-to-door asking people to vote for the Congress and tell them about the historic Food Security Bill, the Land Acquisition Bill and the Anti-Graft Lokpal Bill, which would ultimately benefit the common man.

The Congress’s main rival, the BJP, has already started many campaigns in the city like ‘Ek Note, Kamal Pe Vote’, ‘NaMo Tea Party’, and ‘Kamal Mehandi and Rangoli’ campaign.

AAP organises quiz contest

AAP volunteer Harsharanjit Singh, an NRI, conducted a quiz competition at the Sector 17 Plaza to promote the party in an unique way by giving AAP merchandise in the form of mugs. A total of 35 mugs were given as prizes to the contestants. The questions were based on party leaders and party activities

Modi’s live telecast

The live telecast of BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi addressing the Chartered Accountants Association conference in New Delhi was organised at 29 places in the city on Thursday. Here, city-based chartered accountants and economic professionals listened to Modi’s ‘Economic Growth-the Way Forward’. The city BJP president, Sanjay Tandon, along with his delegation deliberated on Modi’s speech at Sector 34.



Start paid parkings in markets: F&CC 
Councillor Mukesh Bassi representing Ward No. 17 opposes proposal
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
With paid parking being introduced in two parking lots in Sector 22, the Municipal Corporation (MC) is keen on turning other parking lots in sector markets that witness rush, into paid parkings.

The MC is considering turning parking lots in Sectors 34, 15 and 19 into paid parkings.

At the Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) meeting, the members were of the view that the free parking lots witnessing chaos should be identified and converted into paid parking lots. They proposed that where ever there were encroachments, the area should be converted into paid parking lots.

Saurabh Joshi, a BJP councillor and a member of the F&CC, proposed the parking lots in the city witnessing rush be either maintained by market associations or converted into paid parkings. “The parking lots in Sector 15, 19 and 34 are the ones that witness haphazard parking of vehicles. This inconveniences those visiting the market “, Joshi stated.

MC officials stated that the infrastructure to convert the parking lot next to gurdwara in Sector 34 into paid parking was also being constructed. “The road marking, railings and re-carpeting of the parking lots will be done soon so that the parking lot can be auctioned”, the MC officials said.

The proposal to convert the free parking lots into paid ones has not gone down well with many councillors. Mukesh Bassi, Congress councillor from Ward 17 (consisting of Sectors 18, 19 and 21) has opposed the proposal and written a letter to the Mayor stating that the Sector 19 market should not be converted into a paid parking.

“Presently, the Sector 19 Market Association is managing the parking lot in the market in a very systematic way,” mentioned Bassi in his letter to the Mayor.

Bassi stated that instead of imposing the paid parking system on residents, the MC should adopt people-friendly approach, which is already being followed by the Sector 19 Market Association.

Congress councillor Pardeep Chhabra, who is also a member of the F&CC, stated that the paid parking lots in the city should be introduced only with the consent of the area councillor.



Rs 30 lakh approved for developing parks, green belts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation (MC) is going to spend around Rs 30 lakh on developing various parks and green belts in the city. The MC will also install playing equipment and benches in the parks.

The Environment Committee of the MC in a meeting held recently approved the agendas for the city parks and green belts. The committee approved Rs. 5.64 lakh for fixing of children multi-play equipment in various parks of Sectors 39 and 40. A sum of Rs 3.71 lakh has also been approved for play equipment in green belts of Sector 38 (West) and near the Fire Station in Sector 38.

Another Rs 4.31 lakh has been approved for the development of the parks, green belts and garden in Sector 44. “Development of parks in front of House No. 24 in Sector 28-A and House No. 3036 in Sector 28 D, will also be carried at a cost of Rs 8.44 lakh”, said a committee member.



13.5 lakh new families covered 
Our Correspondent

Mohali, February 27
Under the new atta-dal scheme, 31.5 lakh blue-card holder BPL families in the state will get wheat and pulses at the subsidised rates of Re 1 and Rs 20 per kg, respectively. Now, the ambit of the scheme had been extended by including around 13.5 lakh new families. They had been provided with wheat at a much lower price.

Launching the scheme for Mohali district at the Baba Banda Singh Bahadur War Memorial, Chapparchiri, Adesh Partap Singh Kairon, Minister for Food and Civil Supplies, said 1.45 crore members of these families would directly benefit under the scheme.

He said the SAD-BJP government was the first government in the country which had started the ambitious scheme for the poor. Earlier 18 lakh families were covered under the scheme and Rs 4 per kg wheat and Rs 20 per kg pulses were distributed among them.

He further said that 98,000 families in Mohali district would be covered under the new atta-dal sheme.

To check the harassment of beneficiaries, the subsidised food grains will be distributed twice a year, in June and December, and the beneficiaries will be provided with the items in their villages.

Kairon distributed wheat and pulses among beneficiaries besides giving them blue cards. 



Increasing phosphate level a threat to Sukhna lake: Study 
Our Correspondent

Mohali, February 27
A study has revealed that the phosphate level in the Sukhna Lake has risen to a level that can seriously damage the ecology of the water body.The accepted level of phosphates in water ecologies is 5 mg/litre. However, a study conducted by the Rayat Bahra Group of Institutes has shown that phosphate in the Sukhna is much higher than the desirable levels. At places, it is almost double the desired levels.

This is leading to eutrophication in the lake, which is defined as an increase in the rate of supply of organic matter in an ecosystem that ultimately damages it.

Simerjit Kaur, assistant professor, Department of Applied Sciences, Rayat Bahra Institute of Engineering and Biotechnology, Mohali, who has conducted the study, said study has been reported in the International Journal of Advances in Engineering Research.

Simerjit Kaur said phosphates and nitrates occur in small amounts in all aquatic environments and are required to maintain the growth and metabolism of plants and animals. Through the process of eutrophication, dissolved minerals and nutrients flow into the lake.

Increased phosphates deplete dissolved oxygen levels in the lake and cause the formation of algae blooms and bacterial growth. A rise in the phosphate levels has also caused the burst of plants and phytoplankton in the lake that has led to the formation of green slime across the surface of the lake in many areas. The layer inhibits light entry into the water and lessens the amount of oxygen that can get into water from the air. Plants below the water surface may die from the lack of light.

The study revealed that while all other parameters were within the desirable limits in the lake, the concentration of phosphates had increased significantly.

The Sukhna Lake has a total catchment area of 4,207 hectares out of which 3,312 hectares constitute the Shivalik hills and the remaining 895 hectares fall in three villages, Kaimbwala, Kansal and Saketri.



Unemployed health workers demand jobs

Mohali, February 27
High drama was witnessed at Kharar Sabji Mandi when around 20 unemployed youngsters climbed on water tank, demanding the state government to provide them employment here this evening. The protestors were members of Unemployed Multi-Purpose Health Workers (Male) Union, who demanded the government to provide them jobs.

“Give us jobs otherwise we would not come down from the tank,” said Mandeep Singh, president of the union.

The protestors climbed the tank at around 4 pm and were continuing with their protest till the filing of the report.

Mandeep Singh added that about 1,650 posts of health workers (male) have been vacated in the state. “They used to recruit female workers every now and then but the posts of male workers had been lying vacate since 2006,” said Mandeep Singh adding that over 2,000 male health workers were jobless in the state after completing their course. If they have no jobs, the government should shut down the institutes, offering the course, added the protestors. Meanwhile, the police failed to bring down the protestors. — TNS



Will introduce beat system with modifications, says new Mohali SSP
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 27
Mohali would soon have a ‘traditional’ beat system but with some modifications, said the new Senior Superintendent of Police Gursharan Singh Sandhu, who joined his duty here today evening.

While talking to Chandigarh Tribune, SSP Sandhu said the beat system is very effective to infuse confidence and feeling of security among the public. “Revival of the beat system with some modifications will be one of my top priorities here,” said SSP Sandhu. “I am aware that there was sudden spurt in criminal activities here in the recent past, which had dented the faith of public. With a proper beat system, visible police presence, intensified patrolling at night and deputing police personnel at right points on right time would be the main measures, I would like to take control of the law and order situation,” said the SSP.

To check the anti-social elements, police personnel will be deputed where they are required to be, said the SSP. “The schools and colleges, markets having banks and jewellery shops, sensitive traffic points during peak hours and crowded markets are some places which need deployment of cops at right times.

On poor traffic management in the town, SSP Sandhu said the things would be improved soon. “Nailing down traffic offenders, particularly who puts theirs and others lives in danger by jumping red lights is also on the top of my priority list. I would soon call a meeting of station house officers of all the police stations and direct them to depute officials on sensitive traffic points, especially during peak hours. Now the traffic offenders would be on the police radar”, he said.

“Suggestions from public are welcome. My doors are always open to public. If anybody is being harassed at the hands of police, he/she can come to me anytime”, said the SSP.



Mid-day meal cooks block traffic in Mohali
Lodge protest against Punjab Govt for its bid to hand over the job of preparing meals to a private party
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 27
Over 700 members of the Democratic Mid-day Meal Cook Front, Punjab, blocked the traffic at the light point of Phase VII here today.

The protesters were venting their ire against the state government alleging that it was going to privatise the Mid-day Meal cooking system soon. They also demanded that their services be brought under the Labour Act.

Harjinder Kaur, the state president of the union, said hundreds of Mid-day Meal cooks had no other source of income and were the only breadwinner in their families.

“Now, the government is planning to give the work in private hands, which will render mid-day meal cooks out of job,” Harjinder Kaur claimed.

Earlier, members of the union started gathering at Gurdwara Amb Sahib, Phase VIII, at around 12 noon. Soon after, the agitators decided to hold a march towards the residence of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal at Chandigarh.

However, the police prevent the march from going ahead of the Phase VII light point on the Chandigarh-Mohali road.

The agitators squatted on the road to cordon off the light point.

The blockade was lifted only when Mohali Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Lakhmir Singh assured them that Deputy Commissioner Tejinderpal Singh Sidhu would arrange their meeting with the CM’s principal secretary next week.

The police had to divert the traffic to alternate routes to prevent chaos around the light point.



UT proposal on dividing ADC’s work resented
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
The Chandigarh Administration’s proposal to the Election Commission to divide the work of Additional Deputy Commissioner Tanvi Garg, a 2009-batch UT cadre IAS officer, has led to resentment among other officers on deputation in the UT.

The UT has proposed that the charges of Additional District Magistrate (ADM) and SDM (Central) would be taken away from Garg and would be allowed to hold the charges of CITCO Managing Director, Additional Labour Commissioner, Additional Commissioner, Excise and Taxation, and Director, Tourism.

Interestingly, the ADC in her capacity exercises the additional responsibilities of labour commissioner, additional director, food and supplies, and excise and taxation commissioner on behalf of the Deputy Commissioner.

Questioning the move of the UT's top brass, officials said there was no separate post of ADM. It was an additional responsibility being looked after by the ADC. Only the posts of SDM (Central) and ADC were separate but were being looked after by one officer.

The post of CITCO MD, which can be held by a Punjab-cadre officer, is being held by Tanvi Garg while the UT Administration could give the responsibility to another Punjab-cadre officer Bhavna Garg. The post of Director, Tourism, also held by the Tanvi Garg, was earlier held by state-cadre officers.

Officials said the proposal by the UT could be enforced only after getting the nod of the Election Commission.

It is learnt that the responsibilities of the SDM Central and the ADM would be distributed among Kashish Mittal, SDM (South), and Danish Ashraf, SDM (East).



Mahashivratri celebrated with religious fervour
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 27
Long queues were witnessed in front of the Saketri temple as hundreds of Lord Shiva devotees reached there to pay obeisance on the auspicious Mahashivratri today.

Devotees and management of the temple had a pleasant surprise when Bollywood actor Rishi Kapoor reached the temple at around 6.30 pm to offer prayers and perform religious rituals.

Devotees from far-fetched places had been flocking to the temple since wee hours.

The Administration and the police had made elaborate arrangements to prevent a chaotic situation. Twenty-three CCTV cameras were installed to keep a close vigil in and around the temple. Over 900 police personnel were deployed to maintain law and order.

The temple management claimed that more than 1.5 lakh devotees visited the temple today. "We have distributed milk and fruit worth Rs 5.5 lakh among the devotees," said a member of the temple management.

Though the police have put restrictions on selling and distributing 'bhaang prasad' in and around the temple, it was seen being distributed and sold openly in the temple's vicinity.

Meanwhile, several devotees were attacked by honeybees in the temple in the morning. Three devotees were badly stung.

Mahashivratri was celebrated with religious fervour in Chandigarh and Mohali too.



Expert throws light on crystals

Chandigarh, February 27
India followed the English model of science, technology production and prosperity, but China focused on setting up manufacturing units to gain prosperity.

This was stated by the president of the Indian National Science Academy (INSA) and former director of National Physical Laboratory (NPL), Dr Krishan Lal, during the Chandigarh Science Congress (CHASCON) at Panjab University today.

Dr Lal addressed the gathering on the topic “Fascinating world of crystals: Fundamentals to applications.”

Discussing the applications of crystals, he said, “Crystals form the core part of a number of things, including mobiles. ” — TNS



62.4 million people in India diabetic: Expert
Fast food, sedentary lifestyle, stress, genetic factors to blame 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
China is the diabetes capital of the world. Going by the figures of the International Diabetes Federation-2013, 92.4 million Chinese people are suffering from diabetes. India, too, does not lag behind as nearly 62.4 million people are diabetic.

This was stated by PGIMER Prof Anil Bhansali at the Panjab University (PU) here today.

Prof Bhansali was delivering a special lecture on “Diabetes: A global challenge” during the 8th Chandigarh Science Congress (CHASCON) at PU.

“As many as 382 million people are suffering from diabetes and the figures are likely to go up to 592 million by the year 2035,” he added.

Referring to a study, Prof Bhansali said, “Nearly 71 per cent employees and 82 per cent heads of various organisations are overweight.”

Talking about diabetes in India, he said, “The urban population is majorly suffering from diabetes. It occurs at a younger age and 54 per cent people have diabetes before 50 years of age. A majority of patients are non-obese but centrally obese.”

Stating that diabetes was a silent killer, Prof Bhansali, said, “Diabetes poses a great challenge not only to patients, health care providers but also to the nation’s economy.”

He suggested that high-risk patients should be periodically screened as early diagnosis helped prevent the disease.


Diabetes is a state of persistent high blood glucose level resulting from insulin deficiency and insulin resistance.  It consequently leads to long-term vascular complications in the kidney, retina, nerves and stroke.



60-member foreign delegation visits CII-Avantha
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
A 60-member foreign delegation visited ‘CII-Avantha Centre for Competitiveness for SMEs’ today to acquire knowledge on competitiveness, leadership and entrepreneurship.

Centre head R Narayanan and Padmakumar Nair, director and dean, LM Thapar School of Management, addressed the gathering.

“To understand leadership, one must enhance understanding of psychology,” said R Narayanan.

The delegates hailed from countries such as Ethiopia, Hungary, Sudan, Ivory Coast, Ecuador, Nepal, Tajikistan, Poland and Madagascar.

Nair guided them to set up small businesses and maintain them.

The delegation was divided into two focus areas — Innovative Leadership for Organization Growth & Excellence (ILOGE), and Entrepreneurship for Small Business Trainers/Promoters (ESB-TP), led by NIESBUD.

“Traditionally we believe that entrepreneurs are strikingly innovative. However, for anyone to be an entrepreneur, he needs to look at things differently, perceive risk differently and also remain passionate about his goal,” said Nair.



Tributes paid to Chandra Shekhar Azad

Chandigarh, February 27
Glowing tributes were paid to freedom fighter Chandra Shekhar Azad on his martyrdom day today. A ‘Mashaal March’ was organised by the Students For Society (SFS) and members of the civil society. The march commenced from the Student Centre and concluded outside Panjab University Vice-Chancellor’s office.

Punjabi filmmaker Jatinder Mauhar addressed the students. SFS president Arishdeep said, “The role of these rev leaders must be understood in the context of the present scenario.” — TNS



Health notes

Three-day workshop on echocardiography

The Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, PGIMER, will be conducting the 8th Annual Perioperative and Critical Care Transesophageal Echocardiography (TEE) workshop at the Advanced Cardiac Centre (ACC) from February 28 to March 2. Around 100 trainees from across the country and abroad are expected to be attending the workshop.

PGI to buy equipment for better cancer diagnosis

The Department of Radiotherapy is in the process of installing a High Energy Linear Accelerator at the cost of Rs 25 crore with facilities of Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT), Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT), Volumetric Modulated Arc Therapy (VMAT) and Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT). In the northern India, the PGI will be perhaps the only government hospital to have the facility thereby providing affordable treatment to cancer patients. The department is organising a Continuing Medical Education (CME) programme on 'Advanced Radiotherapy Techniques - Planning and Delivery of IMRT, IGRT, VMAT and SBRT' on March 1 and 2. Over 200 delegates will be attending the programme. Lectures on various aspects of advanced radiotherapy techniques will be delivered during the programme.

Health fair held

The National Institute of Nursing Education (NINE) organised a Health Mela in collaboration with the School of Public Health ,PGIMER, and Haryana Health Department at Batour Barwala village (Panchkula). The theme of the fair was 'Swasth Nari Swasth Bharat'. As many as 160 patients attended a health camp organised on the occasion. — TNS




Alternative routes can check traffic snarls

People visiting the City Beautiful are greeted with traffic snarls just at the entry point, the Zirakpur-Chandigarh barrier. This is due to a significant rise in the number of personal modes of commuting. Heavy transport vehicles plying on the Chandigarh-Zirakpur road only add to commuters' misery. A large number of commuters from Zirakpur, Patiala and Ambala, who have their offices in Chandigarh, face traffic congestion on the stretch from Zirakpur to the Tribune Chowk. Of late, the Chandigarh Administration had been contemplating to build a flyover on the stretch to contain the traffic problem. It is apparently a good idea but the Administration should also chalk out some alternative routes to save the commuters from the daily trouble. The Administration should ensure smooth flow of traffic on the Zirakpur-Chandigarh road.

Naina sharma, Ambala

Reality check: UIET fest ended on 'tricky' note

Apropos UIET Goonj-14, Chandigarh Tribune's article proclaimed that the "fest was a great success" but the reality is otherwise. It also proclaimed that the "UIET fest ends on a colourful note". This is also to the contrary. At the time of registration, the organisers treasure the participants. But later, the treatment changes. The bhangra competition has been affected by this. First, the UIETians informed the participants about three cash prizes for the respective rank holders. But when the time for results came closer, they changed the said "three" cash prizes into one. ie Rs 35,000. Moreover, their own college bhangra team got the first position despite their team dancing to the beats of "lungi dance". This is unacceptable for bhangra lovers. Rather, the heading of the article should have been "UIET fest ends on a tricky note".

harpreet Singh saini, Chandigarh



UK varsity eyes collaboration with Panjab University
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
The University of Birmingham, UK, is exploring the possibility of research and other collaborations with Panjab University (PU), Chandigarh.

The provost and Vice-Principal of the University of Birmingham, Prof Adam Tickell, and head of international development, Prof Marilyn Miles, visited Panjab University (PU) today.

The delegation also met PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Arun Kumar Grover.

Prof Tickell also visited the ongoing 8th Chandigarh Science Congress (CHASCON) and met the participants and teachers.

“Birmingham has a large Punjabi population. Panjab University elicited our interest due to its high international ranking and quality research work,” said Prof Tickell.

PU Dean International Students Prof Gurmail Singh and Dean Science Prof Rupinder Tiwari were also present on the occasion.

The University of Birmingham was established by Queen Victoria by the Royal Charter in 1900 and was the UK’s first civic university, where students from all religions and backgrounds were accepted on an equal basis.



Delhi IIT don delivers Prof Bawa Kartar Singh lecture
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 27
Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Awardee and Professor at IIT Delhi Charusita Chakravarty delivered the Prof Bawa Kartar Singh memorial lecture during the Chandigarh Science Congress (CHASCON) at Panjab University today.

While quoting the Paracelsus and Rahim, Prof Chakravarty, said, “Water is an unsual liquid and solvent. It is important for the world and all its creatures.”

“The density of Earth is 5.5 times the density of water. Water is just 0.06 per cent of the Earth but it covers 71 per cent surface of the Earth,” she added.

Prof Chakravarty said, “Water has a high boiling point and exists as a liquid at terrestrial temperatures. It has high specific heat and oceans act as thermal reservoirs. Water has negative volume of melting, ice floats on the surface of the liquid.”

The 31st Prof Bawa Kartar Singh Memorial Lecture — organised to commemorate his memory — saw distinguished scientists deliver lectures.
He is considered as the Father of Stereochemistry in India.



PU & college notes

PUTA to honour young faculty

The Panjab University Teachers Union (PUTA) executive has decided to recognise the contribution of teachers and encourage the young faculty by honouring them. Applications have been invited till March 10 and will be screened by the committee comprising Dr Tankeshwar Kumar, Dr Jaynati Dutta and Dr Jivesh Bansal. Last year, as many as 75 teachers were awarded by PUTA. The same committee has been assigned the task to invite nominations again from members and honour significant contributors.

Pyschology congress ends

The 3rd Indian Psychological Science Congress concluded at the Post Graduate Govt College (PGGC-46) today. The event saw participation from more than 800 delegates from across the country and abroad. During the event, the Life Time Achievement Award was given to Prof NK Chadha, head, Department of Psychology, University of Delhi, for his invaluable contribution to the field of psychology. The two-day conference was jointly organised by the National Association of Psychological Science (NAPS) and Psychology Department, PGGC-46. A total of 302 research papers were presented during the 24 sessions. Besides this, a total of 242 papers were presented through posters.

Annual art exhibition

Kala-Srijan, the creative hand society of the Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11, organised the annual art exhibition of the Fine Arts Department on Wednesday. More than 120 works in various categories of art works were displayed during the exhibition. The exhibition also included the works of the alumni of the Fine Arts Department, who are pursuing postgraduation in fine arts. Principal Achila Dogra inaugurated the exhibition. Achila appreciated the creativity and imagination of the students. She applauded the efforts made by the society for conducting such an exhibition.

Students bring laurels

Fourteen students of the Dev Samaj College for Women, Sector 45, Chandigarh, were given certificates on Wednesday for completing a course on retail management under the STAR scheme of the National Skill Development Council. The qualifying examination was conducted in December, 2013.

Shoes distributed

Desh Bhagat University distributed shoes and socks among 100 students of BR Ambedkar Primary School at Janta Colony, Nayagaon. The event was organised in collaboration with NGO Hara Punjab Khara Samaj, subsidiary of the Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes, under the scheme “Mission Desh Bhagat”. Chancellor Dr Zora Singh and Pro-Chancellor Tajinder Kaur also interacted with the students and staff members of the school. Speaking on the occasion, Tajinder Kaur, CEO, Hara Punjab Khara Samaj, and Pro-Chancellor, Desh Bhagat University, said, “We keep on helping the needy students of various schools. Earlier also, the members of the NGO and the university distributed shoes and socks among the students”. Dr Zora Singh, Chancellor, Desh Bhagat University, and chairman, Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes, said, “We are doing our best to encourage the students to study harder. Raj Sachdeva, principal of the school, appreciated the efforts of Desh Bhagat University.

Placement drive

Panchkula Engineering College organised a mega placement drive on its campus in Barwala. Over 1,300 students from various educational institutes of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and Uttaranchal took part in the drive. A total of 703 candidates were shortlisted. Thereafter, 318 students have been called for the final interview. After a series of group discussion and personal interview, the candidates were able to mark their dominance. Various companies, including Reliance, Ultratech, Tata Teleservices, Indo Farm, Soma Solar Systems, took part in the job fest. — TNS



From schools

Students shine at art contest

MOHALI: Students of DAV School won 13 prizes in the recently-concluded 8th National-level Students Art Contest organised by the Lalithkala Centre for Visual Arts, Karnataka. Prakriti Vohra of Class VIII won the President Gold Medal and a cash prize of Rs 1,500. Sanskriti of Class III, Arshdeep Singh of Class V, Sheetal Ramola of Class VI, Pulkit Saini of Class VII and Gurwinder Kaur of Class IX bagged gold medals. Two students bagged silver medals and five students bagged bronze.

Spreading message to eat healthy

The tiny-tots of pre nursery of St Soldier School through the medium of a story ‘Jim who only liked to each junk food’ spread the message ‘eat green vegetables’. Attired in costumes of a potato, carrot, spinach and cabbage, the children spoke about the benefits of vegetables.

Tableau contest

Panchkula: To commemorate the 190th birth anniversary of Swami Dayanand, founder of Arya Samaj, tableaus on ‘inculcation of moral values among students and modern youth’ was presented by various schools at DAV Senior Public School, Surajpur. The host school won the third prize in the tableau competition. School principal Anuja Sharma lauded the efforts of the participants.

Counselling workshop

A Dikshant International School organised a three-day career counselling workshop for students of Tricity, which kicked off on Tuesday. The event was aimed at counselling students appearing for the Class X examination in the Tricity. More than 120 students of Classes IX, X and XI of Dikshant International School benefited from the session. The workshop commenced with a seminar on ‘There are no ideal careers, only ideal choices’ and an interactive group session. The session covered various options available in different streams, career avenues that the students were not aware of.— TNS



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