SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

JDA staff clear backlog on weekends
Jalandhar, March 8
All development works, it seems, were waiting for the Lok Sabha elections to come to finally get started. While earlier it was a race against time for the MC officials to get all tender works for roads worth Rs 59.84 crore through before imposition of election code, the employees of various departments were then engaged in making as many as 91,600 Blue Cards and now the entire staff of Jalandhar Development Authority has been instructed in the weekend to issue pending NOCs to the nearly 11,000 applicants from illegal colonies.

PUDA employees clear the files regarding the regularisation of illegal colonies in Jalandhar on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Election code violations still on
Jalandhar, March 8
The district election office, it seems, is failing to take note of violations of the code of conduct since the announcement of Lok Sabha polls three days back. The BJP leaders, including the state president, Kamal Sharma, had come to attend a 'Chai pe Charcha' programme on Ladowali Road. During the show, chairs were laid in the middle of the road, thereby, blocking the traffic.


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Up in arms: Members of the Istri Jagriti Manch hold a protest in Jalandhar on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Elderly man run over by train
Jalandhar March 8

An elderly person was today crushed to death by a train near the Bidipur railway crossing. The deceased is yet to be identified by the police. As per the Government Railway Police, incident occurred around 9 am this morning when the victim was crossing the railway tracks. The victim was run over by a speeding train and died on the spot.

Undertrials languish in jail for months
Jalandhar March 8
Delay in preparing forensic reports of narcotic seized by the Punjab police, under Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, is forcing hundreds of undertrials to languish in jail.

Itís former Local Bodies Minister v/s MC Commissioner
Jalandhar, March 8
The ongoing tussle between the former Local Bodies Minister Manoranjan Kalia and the MC seems to have flared up with the former complaining to the Speaker of the Vidhan Sabha against the Municipal Commissioner Manpreet Singh Chattwal, levelling allegations of showing disregard to him during a recent incident.

18 felicitated on Intíl Women's Day at Apeejay College
Jalandhar, March 8
Felicitating 18 women who have made a mark for themselves in various fields, Apeejay College of Fine Arts organised a programme 'Inspiring Change' on the occasion of International Women's Day here today.


Students perform during a fashion show; and (right) students present a Rajasthani dance during the International Women's Day function at the Apeejay College of Fine Arts in Jalandhar on Saturday. Tribune Photos: Malkiat Singh

 

 





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Jalandhar votes 2014
JDA staff clear backlog on weekends
Told to clear nearly 11,000 NOCs of the residents of illegal colonies
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, March 8
All development works, it seems, were waiting for the Lok Sabha elections to come to finally get started. While earlier it was a race against time for the MC officials to get all tender works for roads worth Rs 59.84 crore through before imposition of election code, the employees of various departments were then engaged in making as many as 91,600 Blue Cards and now the entire staff of Jalandhar Development Authority (JDA) has been instructed in the weekend to issue pending NOCs to the nearly 11,000 applicants from illegal colonies.

Clearly the political masters are after the officials to get the work done just ahead of the elections so as to appease the vote bank. Interestingly, it was at 4:30 pm yesterday that the staff got a copy of the orders from Chief Administrator Jalandhar Development Authority Jaskiran Singh to attend office as per routine on both Saturday and Sunday. The orders mentioned that owing to the recent strike, the work of NOCs had got pending and that the services of entire staff would be taken on the weekend to clear the backlog.

Even the staff of the office which is not directly linked with the branch had been assigned the work to clear the files. As the Jalandhar Tribune team went to the office this morning, there were huge bundles of files lying scattered on tables of all employees on all three floors. There were bundles stacked on floor and even on chairs. The support staff was seen shifting the files from one floor to another with complete chaos prevailing all around. The employees had been cribbing that their weekend had been spoiled by their officers just to help local MLAs and councillors gain mileage ahead of Parliamentary polls.

While the officials kept on sitting on the prevailing pendency for the past more than five months, they seem to have all of a sudden woken up from the slumber. The employees confided that the MLAs and councillors had been daily making calls to them as the applicants had been raising their voice against the prevailing pendency on issuing NOCs.

Till about 20 days back, the JDA had received 654 applications from colonisers. These include 235 from Jalandhar, 302 from Hoshiarpur and 117 from Kapurthala. No NOC has been given to even a single colonizer.

By the same time, the JDA had received 17,562 applications from the plot owners including 9812 from Jalandhar, 3727 from Hoshiarpur and 4023 from Kapurthala. Of these, only 5840 plot owners had got regularization certificates of the MC. These include 3837 from Jalandhar, 492 from Hoshiarpur and 1511 from Kapurthala. In the last 20 days, the office has received 291 more applications, making it to a total of 17,853 of which about 6800 stand disposed off.

Chief Administrator JDA Jaskiran Singh gave the reason, "The orders had been passed as the public was feeling harassed. While the employees remained on strike for nearly a month in December-January, they went on pen down strike last week too. We could issue only about 6800 NOCs. Files of 2000 applicants were found incomplete or with balance payment yet to be received. There were about a total of 18,000 applications. I had to take the decision now as our staff might be deployed for election duty soon."

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Election code violations still on
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service


BJP leaders hold 'Chai pe Charcha' programme by blocking the traffic on Ladowali Road in Jalandhar on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

A red beacon on the top of the escort Gypsy of Jalandhar Central MLA Manoranjan Kalia on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Jalandhar, March 8
The district election office, it seems, is failing to take note of violations of the code of conduct since the announcement of Lok Sabha polls three days back. The BJP leaders, including the state president, Kamal Sharma, had come to attend a 'Chai pe Charcha' programme on Ladowali Road. During the show, chairs were laid in the middle of the road, thereby, blocking the traffic. Huge screens depicting party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi's pictures had been put up on display.

District president of the party Subhash Sud organised and attended the event which was held in front of the office of party's transport cell president. Asked on whether the party had taken permission for the same, Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Electoral Officer Varun Roojam said the SDM concerned had confirmed that permission was taken. Asked how the permission had been granted to hold a rally in the middle of the road that too blocking the traffic, the DEO said, "Permission was given with reasonable restriction that they will follow traffic laws".

In another episode, the escort Gypsy of Jalandhar Central MLA Manoranjan Kalia was seen still having a red beacon on the top. While his Innova car had its red light removed, the Gypsy which leads him still had the beacon even three days after the imposition of the election code. Roojam said that use of light amounted to code violation.

Voter enrolment camp

The District Election Office will hold a day-long new voter enrolment camp at all polling booths in the district. This will be the last camp ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. All Booth Level Officers have been asked to be present in their respective booths tomorrow to receive the forms from new voters.

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Elderly man run over by train
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar March 8
An elderly person was today crushed to death by a train near the Bidipur railway crossing. The deceased is yet to be identified by the police. As per the Government Railway Police, incident occurred around 9 am this morning when the victim was crossing the railway tracks. The victim was run over by a speeding train and died on the spot.

ASI Charanjit said, "The body had got damaged badly and the police did not found any identity proof from his pockets which could establish his identity."

"The body was taken to at the Civil Hospital, Kartarpur, for the postmortem. Inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CrPc were initiated by the police," he said.

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delay in preparing forensic report
Undertrials languish in jail for months
Nikhil Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar March 8
Delay in preparing forensic reports of narcotic seized by the Punjab police, under Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, is forcing hundreds of undertrials to languish in jail.

Some of the drug peddlers are reportedly languishing in jail for months because courts have denied them bail due to the non affixation of forensic report along with the chargesheet filed by the police.

Sources at the Kapurthala Modern jail said, "The jail houses 4,033 prisoners nabbed under various criminal cases of which approximately 2,400 were nabbed under the NDPS Act. These undertrials are not getting bail due to the lethargic working of Kharar Chemical laboratory in submitting forensic report on seized drug samples to the police." Jail sources revealed that out of 2,400 nabbed drug peddlers, majority is of undertrails, who are daily sent for trail at the Jalandhar courts."

As per the information, there are tonnes of such cases in the district in which drug peddlers are made to languish in jail for lack of chemical report.

Mandeep Singh Sachdeva, president, District Bar Association, said: "The quantum of punishment is decided by the court on various parameters depending upon the quantity of narcotics seized by the police. There are three categories 'small quantity', non-commercial and commercial. Under small quantity, a drug peddler may get minimum imprisonment of six months and maximum of three years. Under non-commercial cases, peddler may face maximum imprisonment of ten years and in commercial category, smuggler may face maximum 20 years of rigorous imprisonment."

"But the exact duration of punishment depends on the report drug test prepared by the chemical laboratory because there are further categories in small quantity, commercial and non-commercial which make the judiciary to decide duration of the sentence," said Sachdev.

He said now days, chemical laboratory were delaying reports for months which actually made the undertrail to languish in jail.

"Three are certain cases in which some of the undertrails even have to languish in jail for over six months," said a lawyer.

Quoting cases in which bail applications were rejected on the grounds of lack of chemical report, the lawyer said, "Atma Ram and Ravi Kumar were nabbed with 100 grams of intoxicant powder by the police. In this case, the police had to present the challan in court before 180 days but due to the delay in report police failed to submit challan on time." "When police submitted chargesheet after 180 days without attaching chemical laboratory report and sought extension in judicial custody of drug peddlers, court had rejected the extension request of police and granted bail to the peddlers on the grounds that accused had already served six months in the jail," he said.

"In second case, Naresh Kumar was nabbed with 20,000 intoxicant capsules and court had dismissed his bail petition on the ground that chemical report was not attached with the challan. Nabbed person had already served six months in the jail (minimum punishment in small quanity of narcotics) but due to the non availability of the report, he had to languish in jail for an unexpected term. In this case, when report arrived after six months, report termed seized narcotics as commercial," he said.

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Itís former Local Bodies Minister v/s MC Commissioner
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, March 8
The ongoing tussle between the former Local Bodies Minister Manoranjan Kalia and the MC seems to have flared up with the former complaining to the Speaker of the Vidhan Sabha against the Municipal Commissioner Manpreet Singh Chattwal, levelling allegations of showing disregard to him during a recent incident.

The matter pertains to a protest by the shopkeepers of Sudama Market on Jyoti Chowk on February 21. Jalandhar Central MLA Kalia has alleged that the behaviour of Chattwal on the day was condemnable as he did not obey the elected representative and Principal Secretary of the Local Bodies. He said that on his request, the Speaker had referred the Privilege Committee which will hear both sides anytime after formation of new committee in the new financial year.

Kalia has written, "On that day at 4:30 pm, I got a call from councillor Joginder Singh Tony asking me to intervene into the matter. I rushed there. I was told by the shopkeepers that they were ready to vacate the encroachment to abide by the orders of the Punjab and Haryana High Court and requested that the MC should not build a wall in front of their shops as it would affect their business. I immediately called Commissioner Chattwal and narrated him the whole conversation and requested him to come to the spot for an amicable solution. Chattwal said that he had already made the arrangement of police force consisting of 150 policemen to remove encroachments forcefully. I insisted that he should come to spot and encroachments could be removed without the use of force provided no wall in built in front of shops. But the Commissioner kept quiet and switched his mobile phone off. I thought that he would come but he did not turn up. After waiting for 15 minutes, I again tried to contact him but there was no response.

After half an hour, I phoned Ashok Gupta, Principal Secretary, Local Bodies, and narrated the episode to him. Gupta said that he would instruct the Commissioner accordingly. Gupta phoned me that Commissioner would be coming within few minutes but the Commissioner did not turn up. After half an hour, I again called up Gupta telling him that the Commissioner did not come to the spot despite his instructions. At this, the shopkeepers started dharna. I remained there for four hours. Commissioner came to the spot when people were agitating and the tents had been pitched for staying there the whole night and I had declared that I would not go till the Commissioner comes. The Commissioner came to the spot at 9 pm when the district administration had intervened."

Kalia added that the on his assurance, the shopkeepers had themselves removed encroachments the next day. He has written that had he not intervened, the use of force by the Commissioner would have led to unrest among the shopkeepers culminating into law and order problem.

Commissioner Chattwal said he had no formal information regarding any such move and would appear before the committee whenever he would be called on the matter. He said since there were directions from the High Court to remove the encroachments, he was bound to act on that day. He said he did not intend to show any disrespect to Kalia.

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18 felicitated on Intíl Women's Day at Apeejay College
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, March 8
Felicitating 18 women who have made a mark for themselves in various fields, Apeejay College of Fine Arts organised a programme 'Inspiring Change' on the occasion of International Women's Day here today.

The women came on stage and shared the experiences of their life. Making a point that mothers need to teach gender equality to their children, businesswoman Kamna Raj Aggarwal said, "After my marriage, my in-laws sent be on a business trip. I was to board a plane from Delhi where I met my mother. She was so anxious. She told me that I am such a scatterbrain and would lose my passport at the Airport itself. Had I not been determined, her comments would have stopped me from going ahead. And had it been a male member from our house going, she would not have made the remark. Though she said it out of sheer concern but I insist that the parents must bring up their daughters in such a way that gender issue ceases to exist," she said.

Former President of the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industries and Chancellor of Apeejay Satya University, Sushma Paul Berlia, said unlike men, the women always needed to prove them. "Had any man not been performing well as the head of the chamber, the discredit would have gone personally to that head. But in my tenure, even a small laxity on my part would have been stretched too far with most people branding women incapable of handling such a position which I dared let not happen."

A student from the same college, Apneet Riyat, who stood 79th in the IAS 2011 batch, and presently serving as Assistant Commissioner of Ludhiana, said it was her college environment that gave her the freedom to realise her dream and fulfill it as well. She too felt that as officers women needed to prove their mettle time and again unlike their male counterparts.

Punjabi poetess Sukhwinder Amrit, who has recently also participated in the SAARC Festival of Literature at Agra, read out a poem "Mawan Te Dhiyan" portraying the generational changes coming regarding women issues.

The other women achievers who were honoured during the function were IG Police (NRI and women wing) Gurpreet Deo, chairperson of Punjab Arts Council Chandigarh Dr Harjinder Kaur, Additional District and Sessions Judge Harpreet Kaur Randhawa, Director Youth Welfare Department from GNDU Amritsar Dr Jagjit Kaur, noted social worker and Trustee of Unique Home Parkash Kaur, and Secretary of Punjab Lalit Kala Akademi Chandigarh Sadhna Sangar.

The college also used the forum to honour its distinguished alumni. In the list were, Aditi, Administrator, Batra Hospital and Medical Research Centre, New Delhi; Amarjit, Programme Executive, Doordarshan Kendra, Jalandhar; Harleen Kaur, advocate, Jalandhar; Isha, Product Manager, HDFC Bank Ltd, Delhi; Namneet Kaur, fashion designer of Delhi who is also the owner of Italian Restaurant Almalfi and has launched fashion] brand 'Timzy Batra' and Seep Taneja, an eminent model.

A short movie "The Journey of a True Leader" on the life and achievements of Sushma Paul Berlia was screened. Winners of face painting and poster making contest organised on the occasion were given prizes. A riveting fashion pageant based on the theme of Women Empowerment showcasing the creativity of the designers of the college was presented. A national award winning Rajasthani folk dance performance Teran Taal mesmerised the audience.

KMV celebrates ĎAmarjyotií

'Amarjyoti ', Kanya Maha Vidyalaya's unique practice to mark the ceremonial close of an academic session and give valedictory wishes to its girl students was celebrated on International Women's Day. The chief guest, Anuradha Sondhi, and the guest of honour, Dr Satpal Gupta, both member of the KMV Managing Committee, were accorded with floral felicitations by Principal Dr Atima Sharma. While reading out the report of the college achievements, she expressed a sense of pride that the tradition of handing over the symbolic lamp of knowledge by outgoing batch of scholars to the junior batch is celebrated every year in the KMV with great solemnity and sanctity. Upholding the tradition of excellence, all the student editors of the college magazine 'Divya' and many other meritorious students were awarded medals and certificates for their exemplary performance in multifarious activities held during the session. As a mark of respect to women achievers on International Women's Day, the college honoured Daljeet Kaur,

Satinder Kaur and Mohini Sharda , the teachers who superannuated recently, for their dedicated services to the institution.

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FEEDBACK

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

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

Deplorable condition of roads

Good infrastructure plays a vital role in the development of any economy. India is the fastest developing country in the world after China which needs good infrastructure. The condition of roads in Jalandhar city is very pitiable. During the rainy season, it becomes more wretched. People find it very difficult to move on the roads for their work during these days. Due to such poor road conditions, the accident rate is also increasing. This problem should be resolved on a priority basis.

Ritu Sehgal, Jalandhar

Zero gain after road widening

In Ramamandi area of Jalandhar, the work on widening the road is almost reaching its completion but the additional width that the roads on either sides have gained is of no use to the commuters. The reason for this is that vendors on the road sides are using that extra space. Actually, this expansion of roads has provided the vendors with smooth, concrete and clean floor to sell their wares. The regular traffic hasn't got an extra inch. Rarely comes an official of the corporation along policemen to clear the roads for traffic and that too for a short-term effect. Then things get back to square one. The problem needs a permanent solution. The administration should pay attention to this problem.

Ravinder Kumar, Jalandhar

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