C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Sexual harassment of girl inmates
Bal Niketan supervisor booked
Accused at large, raids on to arrest him; role of 2 women caretakers under the scanner
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The UT police have booked the supervisor of Bal Niketan in Sector 15, a local shelter home for destitute children, on a charge of sexually harassing girl inmates. Bal Niketan is home to 40 inmates, all girls.

The UT police have booked Manish Arora under Sections 354 and 354 A of the IPC, and Section 12 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) Act. The supervisor is at large. He proceeded on leave two days ago and raids are on to nab him.

Besides Arora, the role of two women caretakers, Manjeet and Meena, is also being investigated for alleged negligence.

The victim girls had submitted a written complaint at the public window of the Police Headquarters against the supervisor.

The girls had complained that they were sexually assaulted, beaten up, tortured and intimidated by the supervisor.

After the complaint was received, the Department of Social Welfare, UT Administration, was asked to look into the complaint on April 3.

The findings of the committee revealed that the complaints were genuine following which UT Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Shayin today intimated the UT police and ordered the registration of a case.

The findings of the inquiry committee revealed that the complaint made by the inmates of Bal Niketan was genuine. “He used to sexually harass the girls. They complained to the caretakers, Manjit and Meena, about it, but no action was taken on their part, which shows insensitivity towards the inmates and negligence of duty,” states the report sent to the DC on April 16.

“Manish Kumar used to hug and touch the children intentionally and used to often come to their dormitories when they were alone. He has been committing the crime with the girl inmates of the shelter home for the past many years," the report states.

Accused allowed to proceed on leave

Sources in the Administration said though an inquiry had been initiated in the case on April 3 and charges against supervisor Manish Arora had been "proved", he was allowed to proceed on leave.

No CCTV cameras on the campus

It is learnt that police officials did not find any CCTV cameras on the premises of Bal Niketan, which are otherwise mandatory to verify such complaints.


After getting a report from a three-member committee, the police has been asked to register an FIR against the erring official.

— Mohammed Shayin, Deputy Commissioner



Murder outside school: 3 convicted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Shalini Nagpal today convicted three persons, including the son of a woman constable, in a murder case. The court convicted Ashwini, Hanish and Harish for the murder of Pushkar Singh outside Government Model School in Sector 19 in September 2011.

The fourth accused in the case is a juvenile and the case against him is pending before the juvenile court. Two of the convicts, Ashini and Hanish, were students of Government Model School in Sector 19 when the incident occurred. Hanish is the son of a UT woman constable.

The quantum of sentence will be pronounced on Wednesday.

The incident occurred on September 26, 2011, when two students of the school, accompanied by Harish, brutally stabbed 24-year-old Pushkar Singh to death. The victim had intervened to end a scuffle between two groups of school students when he was killed.

The incident had occurred just outside the school gate and a few metres away from the Sector 19 police station. The victim was stabbed several times in the chest. He had succumbed to his injuries in the hospital.

The assault occurred at 10.30 pm when Shailender, a Class X student of the school, was attacked by four persons, who came on a bike, while he was walking out of the school premises. The attackers, who came to settle an old score, were brutally beating up Shailender when he saw his friend Pushkar passing by and called for help.

Pushkar rushed to save him when the three attackers stabbed him (Pushkar) several times and fled, leaving him in a pool of blood.

The prosecution stated that the statements of main eyewitness in the case, Shailender, were crucial in leading to the conviction of the three.

Statements of eyewitness proved crucial

Public prosecutor Manu Kakkar said recording of statements of the eyewitness at an early stage expedited the case in their favour. “The accused tried to influence the eyewitness, but timely recording of his statements before the court were crucial, leading to conviction," he said.



Youth found dead on railway track; wife missing
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Ram, the victimPanchkula, April 21
A newlywed woman went missing hours after her husband was found dead on a railway track in the Mansa Devi Complex, Sector 4, here. The victim, Ram (22), was found dead last evening. He was a resident of Gandhi Colony.

According to the police, the duo got married 10 months ago. The victim was taken to the General Hospital, Sector 6, where he was declared brought dead.

"The victim's wife came to the spot. However, at around 10 am today when we went to her residence to record her statement and to ask her if she could accompany us to the hospital for the victim's postmortem, we learnt that she was missing with her bag and baggage," said Sub-Inspector Raj Kumar of the Government Railway Police.

He said, "Prima facie, it doesn't appear to be a suicide case. Foul play cannot be ruled out."

The postmortem of the victim was conducted today, which revealed that besides the injuries caused by coming under the train, there were major head injuries as well.

"The victim has serious head injuries, which don't appear to have been caused by the train. The viscera has been taken for chemical examination," said Dr Saurabh, who conducted the postmortem.

The police are looking for the victim's wife.

Ram's family has hinted at a dispute between the two. His paternal uncle Banwari Lal said, "Ram could not have committed suicide. The girl didn't want to stay with him ever since they got married, but he used to say he would manage the situation."

The family also suspects the involvement of another person.



summer uniform
Education Dept gets its act together
Mehakdeep Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Learning from last year's bitter experience of having provided the summer uniform to students at the fag end of the season, the Education Department has pulled up its socks this academic session.

The authorities claim they have got clearance from the Election Department for the purchase of the school uniform and the students would get their uniform soon. The Election Department's nod is required as the model code of conduct is in force due to the Lok Sabha elections.

Most students in government schools can still be seen dressed in their winter uniform. In the case of new admissions, students are yet to provided the school uniform.

Meena Devi, whose four children study at Government High School, Colony No. 4, said, "Last year, the uniform provided by the authorities to my children were not of their size. I had to pay from my pocket to get the uniform stitched for them. This year, they are yet to provide the school uniform to my children."

Parents alleged that due to the "lackadaisical attitude" of the authorities, the students were forced to wear last year's "old and torn" uniform.

Anjali Kumari, a student of Government Senior Secondary School, Raipur Khurd, said, "Earlier, the school used to provide us with two pairs of socks (white and blue), but now we get the uniform minus the socks, that too towards the end of the season."

Meanwhile, the school authorities in the UT said they had not received any communication from the department so far regarding the procurement of the uniform.

A principal of a school said on condition of anonymity: "Even after the department gives the school authorities the nod for the purchase of the uniform, it takes over a month to get these as the process is tedious."

Last year in February, the department had decentralised the system, making government schools responsible for the purchase of the school uniform with a set of financial guidelines.

Education Secretary Sarvjit Singh said, "Within this week, we will issue advertisements as we have got clearance from the Election Department."

The department provides free uniform to students of classes I to VIII in all government schools.

Summer uniform

For classes I to V

  • A pair of shorts and half-sleeved shirts (for boys)
  • Tunic and half-sleeved shirts (for girls)

For classes VI to VIII

  • A pair of trousers and half-sleeved shirts (for boys)
  • Salwar and half-sleeved kurta (for girls)



Revised House Tax Rates
Explain inordinate delay, ut Admn tells civic body
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The UT Administration has sought a reply from the municipal corporation over its failure to implement the revised house tax rates. According to sources, the MC has been asked to give reasons for it.

The MC is allegedly sitting over a draft report prepared by a special committee of MC officials to increase the existing rates of house tax by 20 times for the current financial year (2014-15). At present, the tax on residential property is Re 1 per sq yard annually.

Sensing opposition from political parties and councillors, the MC had not tabled the report before the house tax committee and the MC House. The report was sent to the present and former Mayors, but they were not in favour of tabling it in the House before the Lok Sabha elections.

A senior official of the UT Administration said as earlier the election process was on, they did not take up the issue with the MC. However, now they had sought a reply from the MC in this regard, he said.

The UT Administration, in a letter written to the MC in July last year, had given it three months to revise the house tax rates. However, 10 months on, the civic body has failed to revise the rates.

The letter read, “The tax is not in conformity with the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act, 1976 (amended in 1994 and extended to the Union Territory of Chandigarh), and is highly inadequate. The notified tax structure needs to be reconsidered by the MC, and requires proper revision by the authority within three months to make it financially reasonable and economically viable."



Endangered Leopard Cat Species
Abandoned kittens ‘blue-eyed babies’ at Chhat Bir
Bipin Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Chhat Bir, April 21
Abandoned by their mother in fields near Ludhiana, two female kittens of a leopard cat, an exotic species of the wild cat found for the first time in Punjab, are now the "blue-eyed babies" of employees of Chhat Bir Zoo.

The Punjab Wildlife Department is leaving no stone unturned to rear these kittens belonging to an endangered species after a DNA test, conducted on the kittens at the Laboratory for the Conservation of Endangered Species, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, confirmed their species.

Being home to this rare and endangered species of wild cats, Punjab now figures on the international map of places having this species.

For the upkeep of the kittens, the zoo authorities have virtually converted a room at the zoo hospital into an incentive care unit (ICU). Nobody except the veterinary doctor and caretaker is permitted to enter this room. The authorities have made provision for coolers to maintain a conducive atmosphere in the room.

Apart from feed and tonic, the kittens are also relishing non-vegetarian delicacies such as broiler, mutton, beef, liver and soft meat six days a week. Friday is a fasting day for them.

Munish Kumar, Field Director, Chhat Bir Zoo, said the kittens were found abandoned by a farmer in his fields near Ludhiana in June-end last year. The farmer informed the Division Forest Officer who then called the Chief Wildlife Warden, Punjab, Dharindra Kumar.

Following Kumar’s directions, the kittens were shifted to Chhat Bir Zoo. Though they were small, weighing about 250 gm each, and were not accepting milk, the veterinary staff at the zoo was surprised that the kittens liked meat, said Munish Kumar.

The zoo authorities were in a quandary about the species and after consulting wildlife experts, blood samples of the cats were sent to the laboratory at Hyderabad. The confirmation of the species spread a wave of happiness among the staff of the Wildlife Department.

Zoo vet MP Singh said apart from these female cats, the zoo had two pairs of leopard cat brought from the North-East a couple of years ago. “The kittens have grown healthy and weigh nearly 600 to 700 gm each now. They will be reared in the hospital room for nearly a year more and then shifted to a new enclosure for public display,” said MP Singh.

The leopard cat is a small wild cat of South and East Asia and lives in tropical evergreen rainforests and plantations at the sea level in subtropical deciduous and coniferous forests in the foothills of the Himalayas, said Gurmit Singh, a former Additional Chief Wildlife Warden, Punjab.


Better Chandigarh
Building violations stand out at rehabilitation colonies
While beneficiaries of the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme cry foul over the ‘faulty’ design of one-room tenements, the issue of major building violations and misuse of colonies and EWS flats constructed by the UT Administration remains unaddressed.

The beneficiaries of the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme have been complaining about the faulty design and inadequate space in one-room tenements being constructed for them. The UT officials, however, claim that the design was adopted due to the past record of building violations and rampant misuse activity in the old rehabilitation colonies.

An extensive survey carried out by the UT Estate Office in all 13 rehabilitation colonies and economically weaker section (EWS) flats across the city revealed rampant building violations, misuse and illegal sale and purchase of the property in the colonies.

Of the over 14,000 houses allotted in the rehabilitation colonies, a majority of these either have been sold off or illegal commercial activities are being run from these. For example: in Charan Singh colony, the plots have been converted into multi-storied houses with basements being used for commercial activities.

Colonies or EWS flats in Sectors 25, 26, 29, 30, 32, 37, 38, Indira Colony, Dadu Majra Colony, Ram Darbar, Mauli Jagran and Khuda Lahora were surveyed by the officials.

As the Chandigarh Administration boasts of heading towards the first slum-free city with the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme, the city residents are crying foul over the delay on the part of the UT in coming up with a general housing scheme despite adequate land available.

“While the UT officials have been receiving accolades for the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme by constructing 25,000 flats, it has not bothered to think about the salaried persons who have been without a house for the past over three decades,” said members of the UT Employee Coordination Committee.

The general housing scheme has been pending with the UT for the past few years.

Background of Slum Rehabilitation Scheme

The Chandigarh Administration in an attempt to make Chandigarh a slum-free city had assigned the task of constructing dwelling units under the Chandigarh Small Flats Scheme – 2006 to the CHB as its implementing agency. As many as 25,728 small flats are to be constructed under the scheme for improving the existing environs of the city. Under the scheme, 23,841 bio¬metrically identified slum dwellers are rehabilitated at eight locations in the city. The forthcoming slum rehabilitation complexes are being developed in the form of integrated townships with all urban planning norms. The total cost of the slum rehabilitation project is around Rs 1,300 crore.


  • At least two rooms should have been provided.
  • Proper survey of the number of members per family should have been conducted.
  • Markets should be set up near the rehabilitation colonies.
  • Regular inspections should be conducted to check violations and problems of residents.
  • Transportation facilities in rehabilitation colonies should be improved.
  • Need-based changes in houses should be allowed to the families having more than 5 members.
  • Housing complexes should be upgraded as societies by creating outer boundary walls.
  • Security guards should be appointed to keep vigil.

One-room tenements at different stages of construction in different parts of the city

Area Small flats

Sec 38 (West) 1,120

Sec 49 1,024

Ram Darbar 576

Dhanas 8,448

Maulia Jagran 2,016

Maloya 12,544

(Some of the flats have already been handed over to the beneficiaries)

What Residents say

They could have at least allotted a separate kitchen. There is a problem of ventilation as well as safety for children who tend to go near the burner since there are no shelves for keeping the burner and no separate area that could be locked. At least one more room could have been allotted to us.

Rajni, a housewife and a resident of Sector 49

The authorities have constructed the houses and forgotten us. Nobody is bothered about their maintenance. They demolished the ‘jhuggis’ to provide us cleaner and good-looking houses. If the lack of maintenance continues, these houses will soon turn into ‘jhuggis’. Nearly 6-ft area could have been included in the houses from the roadside to increase the covered area.

Balram, a factory worker and a resident of Sector 49

There is hardly any separation between the toilet and the kitchen. We feel ashamed when any guest comes to our house. There is hardly any scope for ventilation and hygiene is another problem. I end up cleaning the kitchen area 10 times a day.

Seema, a housewife and a resident of Sector 49

The UT Administration should allow the residents to make need-based changes in the structure of the colony as these are not designed according to the strength of the families residing there. This will discourage unnecessary encroachments in the rehabilitation colonies of the city.

Sharmila, a resident of Dhanas

A resident welfare association should be constituted by the residents of the rehabilitation colonies. It will help the authorities in the upkeep of parks, garbage-lifting and other civic amenities like in other urban areas of the city.

Anil Kumar, a resident of Dhanas

Before constructing new rehabilitation colonies in the city, a survey should be conducted by the authorities in the existing ones to know about its shortcomings so that these facilities are taken care of in the upcoming projects.

Satyavati Gupta, a resident of Dhanas

We are living under tough conditions amidst lack of security and proper look after by the administration. The authorities should come forward and visit our localities to check the reality. We should be given permission to extend our buildings.

Mahesh Kumar, a resident of Sector 38 (West)

As a youngster, it’s quite difficult to grow up in such an environment. Either we should be provided with another set of rooms in the same locality or should be allowed to cover a certain area. We are ready to do it at our own expense. It is high time the authorities should start thinking on these lines.

Nanak Chand, marketing professional and a resident of 38 (West)

The authorities should redesign the entire area. The residents and the authorities should join hands to maintain cleanliness and solve other issues related to civic amenities.

Pralahad, a resident of Sector 56

In summers, the condition gets worse when getting water supply and maintaining cleanliness become a Herculean task. There should be proper facilities in the area. The administration should impose a fine on those found either misusing or not using the facilities.

Renu, a resident of Sector 38 (West)

What Politicians say

Under the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme, the allottees should be given two-room flats instead of one room. Before allotting these flats, the administration should provide facilities such as schools, markets and dispensaries adjoining these slum rehabilitation colonies. Besides, ownership rights should be given to the allottees immediately after allotting the flats to them.

Harmohan Dhawan, former Union Minister and senior BJP leader

Instead of one room, there should be two-room flats plus kitchen. Colony residents live with their families and, in some cases, with their grandparents. So, one room will not be enough for them. Till the time the administration provides facilities such as dispensaries and schools near these slum rehabilitation colonies, the residents should be provided with transport facilities.

Jannat Jahan, BSP candidate for the Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat and councillor



No end to traffic jams on Panchkula-Pinjore-Nalagarh Road
Haryana Public Works Department, National Highways Authority of India indulge in blame game
Bipin Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 21
Long and frequent traffic jams on the busy Panchkula-Pinjore-Nalagarh Road seem unending for motorists. The Building and Roads Wing of the Haryana Public Works Department (PWD) and the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) are shifting their responsibilities from the ownership of the Surajpur-Pinjore bypass project.

While officials of the PWD claim that the Surajpur-Pinjore bypass project had been shifted to the NHAI, the latter turns down the PWD’s claim of not yet having received any communication in this regard.

Nearly 7.5-km-long bypass, under which 7.5-km-long six-lane road is to be constructed to ease traffic congestion on the Panchkula-Pinjore-Nalagarh Road, is hanging fire for the past couple of years.

Even the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and the NHAI are not at loggerheads over the project on dispute related to the transfer of 250 acres acquired for the bypass.

The bypass is proposed for vehicular traffic heading towards Baddi and Nalagarh in Himachal Pradesh from those approaching from the reverse route. Under this project, the bypass is to be diverted from a bridge on the Ambala-Shimla National Highway 22 at Surajpur village and join the Pinjore-Baddi-Nalagarh stretch of the National Highway (NH-21A) at Basol village opposite the Aviation Club, Pinjore.

Starting from Surajpur, the bypass will cross through Rampur Seori, Surajpur, Manakpur-Thakurdass, Manakpur-Nanakchand, Lohgarh, Dhamala and Sukhomajri villages before joining the Pinjore-Baddi Road adjacent to the Aviation Club.

Dr SS Phulia, Deputy Commissioner, Panchkula, said the project had been handed over to the NHAI sometime ago.

“This decision has been taken as the NHAI has a proposal to six lane the NH-21A (falling in Himachal Pradesh) and the Pinjore bypass (falling in Haryana) will be a part of it,” he said.

NHAI project director OC Mathur expressed his ignorance over the matter. Mathur said: “We have not yet received any communication from the state government or the PWD (B&R) authorities in this regard.”

Shashi Sharma, district president of the INLD, said motorists had to trudge for miles due to long traffic jams on the road.

Moreover, railway level crossings on the Pinjore-Baddi and the Pinjore-Kalka roads add to the woes of the motorists, Sharma said.



Meters for Haryana ministers too
Panchkula Electricity Department had bent rules for them but made amends later
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 21
The Electricity Department has finally installed meters outside the houses of ministers in Sector 12A, here. As per the recent notification of the government, meters of all other residents were installed outside in order to prevent thefts, but rules were bent for the Haryana ministers.

Residences of Chief Parliamentary Secretary (CPS) Vinod Bhayana, Haryana Health Minister Rao Narender Singh, Cabinet Minister Savitri Jindal, MLA Sumita Singh, CPS Jaleb Khan, CPS Rao Dan Singh and many other ministers of Haryana were "ignored".

“We have got most of the meters installed outside. Only three-four houses are left and the work will be completed soon,” said DS Dhanda, Executive Engineer of the Electricity Department.

Recently, Chandigarh Tribune had reported that though officials of the department in the city were ensuring that electricity meters were installed outside the houses of residents in order to curb power thefts as per the government’s directions, the ministers in Sector 12A had been given the "special treatment" in this regard and their houses were spared.

A new contractor, who was given the work of shifting meters, took one month to do the work in Sector 12A, but the houses of the ministers were “spared”.

In January this year, the government had ordered that all meters in the houses be shifted outside. The department had also informed the residents of Panchkula that they should cooperate to get the meters shifted.



Price of yellow metal goes down, sales flat this season
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The price of the yellow metal has come down from Rs 30,000 per 10 gram to Rs 28,200 for 22 carats over the past one month. The sales have remained low over the past couple of months despite the wedding season beginning in April.

Jewellers said that residents had begun buying gold, months in advance. A number of families hosting weddings this month had bought gold during Dhanteras and Diwali last year, said a Mani Majra-based jeweller.

The wedding season is not making much of a difference in sales, said Rakesh Talwar, president, Gems and Jewellery Foundation, North.During last Diwali when the city recorded a 50 per cent dip in sale of gold as compared to the sales the same time in 2012, the downward trend has continued till now, said the jewellers.

The shortage of gold in the market, following a ban imposed on import of “ginnies” by the Indian Government, the jewellers had to turn away customers and instead ask them to invest in coins.The jewellers are hopeful of some revision in policies when the new government is formed in May, this year, Talwar said.



Early varieties of mango flood city market
Prices of the juicy pulp go up by 10 per cent as compared to last year
Tribune News Service

Mangoes being sold at a market in Chandigarh on Monday
Mangoes being sold at a market in Chandigarh on Monday. Tribune photo Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, April 21
Mango lovers in the city can take home four varieties of mango that have arrived in the market this week. Alfanso, peri, safaeda and sanduri are the four mango varieties that can be seen everywhere in the market and more varieties are expected to arrive in the next 20 days.

These are early varieties of mango. The demand for dasehri and langda varieties is even more. This time, Alfanso is in great demand.

The cost of one pack of alfanso mangoes containing 12 units is available for Rs 400, while peri is available at nearly Rs 60 per kg in the city markets.

The safaeda and sanduri varieties are being sold at Rs 40 to 60 per kg each, said Rajinder Kumar, acting secretary, market committee, Sector 26.

“The overall prices of mangoes have increased by 10 per cent this year as compared to the last year's prices”, said Dharminder Singh Dhillon, Mandi supervisor, fruits.

The sellers are also bringing in raw stocks of mangoes to ripen them artificially, said market officials.

"The shelf life of naturally ripened mangoes is usually very low. So, for ensuring sales and profit margins, a few artificially ripened mangoes need to be sold," the official added, requesting anonymity.

All varieties of mangoes will be available in the city by mid-May, said vendors.

With the summer setting in, mango lovers can expect large varieties of the fruit this season.



50 per cent booths in Mohali to become model polling stations
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 21
Taking cue from the Chandigarh Administration, the Mohali district election authorities have decided to convert more than 50 per cent of polling booths as model polling stations (MPS), here.

In the MPS, certain basic facilities have to be provided to voters on the day of polling. The aim behind setting up of the MPS is to make the entire experience of voting a pleasant and enriching one for the voter by making certain value addition.

Giving details, Mohali Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Electoral Officer Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu said in every MPS the administration would provide disposable glasses, mineral water, shade to save the voters from sunshine, seating arrangement at the booths, special queue management system, clean washrooms, priority voting for the blind, elderly persons, pregnant women and lactating mothers.

Sidhu added that earlier, the administration had decided to set up one MPS in the district’s three constituencies- Mohali, Kharar and Dera Bassi.

Now, we will convert more than 50 per cent of the polling booths into MPS”, said Sidhu while adding that in the next elections all the booths will be MPSs.

On being asked whether or not the administration would provide “pick up” facility for the elderly or ill persons from their homes (the Chandigarh Administration had also introduced this service with prior booking on a special helpline) to the polling booth, Sidhu said that the administration was contemplating on that.

The administration will decide on providing the “pick up” facility soon”, said Sidhu.

Facilities in every MPS

Giving details, Mohali Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Electoral Officer Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu said in every MPS, the administration would provide disposable glasses, mineral water, shades to save the voters from sunshine, seating arrangement at the booths, special queue management system, clean washrooms, priority voting for the blind, elderly persons, pregnant women and lactating mothers.



Civic body issues challans to 33 violators in city
But fails to repair broken water pipeline in MC building
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Continuing its drive against misuse of potable water in the city, the Municipal Corporation issued challans to 33 violators in the last four days (April 18 to 21). During the period, the MC also issued notices to 119 persons. An MC official said a fine of Rs 2,000 each was slapped on each violator. The fine will be added to their water bills.

The MC has constituted 16 teams that will move across the city in the morning hours till June 30 to check the misuse of water.

Meanwhile, there was leakage in the water pipeline in the MC building. The MC officials who were busy issuing challans to the city residents failed to repair the pipeline for hours together.Shiv Kumar, a resident of Sector 38, who was present in the MC building said, for such leakages notices should be issued to senior officials of the MC. When they can penalise the residents, similar treatment should be given to them too, he said.



Cool comfort for patients, attendants
P’kula General Hospital gets air-conditioned building; 150-bedded maternity unit comes up
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 21
A centrally air-conditioned building has been constructed at the General Hospital. Patients undergoing treatment at the hospital have heaved a sigh of relief as the coolers installed on the premises would remain out-of-order most of the time, putting patients to inconvenience.

At present, all the patients in the emergency ward have been shifted to the new building. The doctors have special rooms in the wards for the welfare of patients.

The new building also consists of an exclusive Maternity Child Hospital (MCH), comprising 150 beds.

Panchkula Civil surgeon Dr VK Bansal said, “We have been working on this project since 2009. Diseases diagnosed in the newly-born babies will be taken care of in the MCH itself.”

A special grant of Rs 25 crores from the centre (including state's share) was granted to the General Hospital after a proposal for the MCH was sent to the authorities concerned. He added, “After the renovation of the old building, the entire hospital will get a facelift.”

The old building is being renovated at a cost of Rs 14 crores.

While all private wards, OPDs will be at the new building, Operation Theater, and diagnostic laboratories will be situated at the old building.

“Coolers in the wards seldom worked. In summers, scorching heat and mosquitoes posed a major problem for the patients admitted in the wards. Thanks to the authorities that now we will have some respite from both the heat and the mosquitoes,” said Veera, a resident of Budanpura.



P’kula DC inspects grain markets
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 21
The Panchkula Deputy Commissioner (DC), SS Phulia, conducted spot inspection of grain markets at Raipur Rani, Barwala and Sector 20, Panchkula, today. The DC was accompanied by Sub-Divisional Magistrate-cum-nodal officer Gurmit Singh.

During the inspections, Phulia ensured that the middlemen and mandi officials adhered to the implementation of instructions and guidelines as stipulated by the state government with respect to carriage, weightage and other facilities.

On the occasion, Phulia served a notice to a middleman, who was not able to meet the specified norms.

Assorted bags of wheat at Panchkula, Raipur Rani and Barwala were also found.

Meanwhile, during an interaction at Raipur Rani, middleman Arun Kumar and farmers aired their grievances to the DC. The DC was apprised of passing of a high voltage wire in an area, absence of outlet for rainy water and other issues. They also urged the Deputy Commissioner to expand mandi area.

The DC said to ensure implementation of set rules, to facilitate the farmers, a committee of senior officers would be constituted.

The committee members include Additional Deputy Commissioner, Sub-Divisional Magistrate (C), DDPO, DFSC, tehsildar, naib tehsildar, BDPO and others. Headed by the DC himself, the members will submit report at 5 pm daily.



17th edition of CII Coolex ends on a positive note
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The 17th edition of CII Coolex 2014 at Himachal Bhawan, sponsored by The Tribune, received a positive response in Chandigarh. The visitors took full advantage of the newly-launched products, attractive offers, schemes and discounted prices of cooling systems.

Popular attractions included wide range of environment-friendly ACs, inverter technology ACs and refrigerators and evaporative air coolers, which is said to have an energy saving efficiency of up to 25 to 30 per cent.

The green and eco-friendly ACs and refrigerators also caught the fancy of visitors from HP, Chandigarh, Punjab and Haryana. Residents, hoteliers, industrialists, factory owners, professionals, hospitals, large commercial establishments and corporate visited the exhibition.

More than 3,000 business queries for various products, with an estimated value in crores of rupees, were received from both residents as well as commercial establishments in the past four days.



GIS project put on hold; work to resume after April 30

Mohali, April 21
Owing to the alleged political compulsions by the government during elections, the Mohali Municipal Corporation had to halt a project, based on the geographical information system (GIS), for collecting property tax data.

Party supporters canvassing for the April 30 Lok Sabha poll were, reportedly, facing the brunt of the resentment against the tax.

Reports said party supporters visiting residents at their houses for seeking votes, were frequently quizzed by voters about the controversial tax issue. On April 19, the Sectors 76-80 Plot Allotment Sangharsh Committee had also held a protest against the imposition of the tax here.

The GIS project was put on hold on April 10 and will be resumed only after the elections (April 30). According to civic body, there are about 55,000 properties within the municipal limits which were to be covered under the project. As many as 45,000 properties have been covered so far.

After the completion of the house-to-house survey, the civic body would be able to generate property details for property tax purposes, that too at the click of a button. Defaulters could also be easily traced. The corporation had planned to issue a unique identity number for every property within its jurisdiction for tax and other payment purposes after collecting digital data through satellite imaging.

A consultant, MapmyIndia, was hired by the civic body for the work and the project was started in mid-January. The company was also carrying out a door-to-door survey to know how many persons lived in a particular house, who was the owner of the property, the size of the plot and the constructed area, the number of floors in the building and details regarding sewerage and the water supply. — OC



Advocate writes to UT Adviser

Chandigarh, April 21
A city-based advocate has written to the UT Adviser and urged that separate posts be created in the UT Administration to protect the city’s heritage. He also demanded that the District Court building in Sector 17 be declared a heritage building.

Advocate Ajay Jagga said in order to ensure that its chances of being a world heritage city becomes bright, the Union Territory of Chandigarh desperately needs a separate post of a secretary (urban planning) in the Chandigarh Administration with a bureaucrat from the Centre. He said there should be a post of additional chief architect (culture and heritage) from the Centre and a legal forum like the Urban Arts Commission for preservation and development.

Jagga in his letter also requested that the District Court Building, Sector 17, Chandigarh, which has been recently vacated, should also be freezed as a site to be nominated as a heritage by the Chandigarh Administration. — TNS



Road show by BSP candidate

Mohali, April 21
The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) candidate from Anandpur Sahib, KS Makhan, held a road show in the peripheral villages of the town, today. The Punjabi singer Makhan was accompanied by BSP general secretary (Punjab) Rajinder Singh Nanheri and other local leaders and supporters of the party.

The road show began at around 10 am and concluded at Balongi village in the afternoon. The cavalcade of Makhan, consisting around 50 four-wheelers, passed through Naya Gaon, Kansal, Mullanpur and other nearby villages. Notably, this was the first ever road show of the BSP candidate in the area. Makhan is yet to kick off his campaigning in the town. Makhan said he would hold another road show in Mohali soon. — TNS



Foster scientific temper in kids: Expert
Scientist AP Jayaraman says science needs to be viewed with a fresh approach
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
On a mission to foster scientific temper in the young minds, nuclear scientist and trustee of the Indian Development Foundation, Dr AP Jayaraman, has emphasised on the need to empower teachers in order to evince students’ interest in the science stream.

Dr Jayaraman, who recently visited various schools in the Tricity, said, “We are living in a world of science without knowing the alphabets of science. Pursuing a career in this field is demanding, challenging and globally more competitive. As such, peoples’ interest has decreased over the years.” He said the invisibility of an individual was the hallmark of science.

The nuclear scientist, who has served over 40 years in the Department of Atomic Energy, said, “In a country such as Singapore, every politician goes through a training in politics. However, in India, where the term ‘scientific temper’ was coined by former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, it has lost its significance today.”

“Today, in our country, politics is driven erratically, without any logical reasoning. Hence there is a need to educate the children to take decisions wisely, logically and scientifically at a tender age,” he added. Citing the example of the US Government, Dr Jayaraman said, “To evince students’ interest in the field of science, the American authorities got the syllabus rewritten by experts and introduced subjects such as physical sciences, Earth science, engineering and society science, life sciences and space science. The same example needs to be replicated in India.”

“We have abundance of information but it is important that we classify it and provide the students with the vital knowledge,” he added.

The scientist said, “The best teachers should be deputed at the kindergarten level. Though errors at the graduation and upper levels can be corrected, the mistakes committed at an early age can never be rectified.”



photography contest
Panjab University extends last date for entries till today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The Department of Public Relations, Panjab University (PU), has extended the last date for the submission of entries for the photography contest on the rich legacy of PU till April 22.

The competition has received enthusiastic response and more than 100 photographs have already been submitted for the two themes — ‘PU legacy & heritage’ and ‘Glimpses of PU today: Architecture/campus/students’.

The Department of Public Relations is organising the competition.

On the theme of PU legacy & heritage, photographers may submit entries of previous university photos involving personalities on the PU campus.

The second contest will be on the architectural beauty of PU campus and its students.

The selected photographs will be displayed at a photo exhibition. The first, second and third prize winners will be given a cash prize of ~5,000, ~3,000 and ~2,000, respectively.

The print-outs of photographs can be taken in colour or black and white. Edited photographs will not be considered for the contest.

The size of photographs should be 12X18 inches with soft copies of the same print-out in a CD.

The contest is open for all. Photo professionals and enthusiasts can apply at the PU Department of Public Relations Office in the Administrative Building, PU Campus.

There is no entry fee for the competition. Candidates can submit a maximum of 10 photographs on a theme.

Gets enthusiastic response

More than 100 photographs have already been submitted for the two themes — ‘Glimpses of PU today: Achitecture/campus/students’ and ‘PU legacy & heritage’. The selected photographs will be displayed at a photo exhibition. The first, second and third prize winners will be given a cash prize of Rs 5,000, Rs 3,000 and Rs 2,000, respectively.



INIFD annual exhibition kicks off
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The International Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD), Chandigarh, today kicked off its Annual Exhibition-2014 on the theme ‘Media Headquarters.’ The exhibition will continue till April 24.

The INIFD students of Interior Design and Textile Design will display their aesthetically designed creations as an essential part of their course curriculum.

The INIFD Annual Exhibition-2014 will showcase various newsrooms, media rooms, lounges and studios. It will also showcase the first-hand making of news and live recordings.

The mesmerising display of creativity by INIFD students will catch your eye.



BPL students: Draw of lots for admission today
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 21
The Haryana Education Department will hold a draw of lots for the students of economically weaker sections and below poverty line (BPL) — to seek admission to Classes I and II in private schools — at its headquarters on Tuesday.

The draw of applications will commence at 3pm.

A spokesman of the Elementary Education Department said under Rule 134-A of the Haryana Education Rules, it is mandatory for private schools to give reservation to students belonging to weaker sections and BPL during admissions. Under the same rule, applications had been invited from the students of these categories, added the spokesman.



Self-defence workshop

Chandigarh: The NSS unit of Shishu Niketan Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 22-D, in collaboration with the women cell of the UT police under the anti-human trafficking unit (AHTU), started a seven-day self-defence workshop on the school campus today.

During the two-hour programme, as many as 50 NSS girls will be imparted training in various techniques of self-defence, besides the know-how of martial arts and karate. School principal Amita Khorana said the training would go a long way in safeguarding the interests of the girl students, who are subjected to numerous forms of exploitation and will teach them how to protect themselves.

Welcome party

A welcome party associated with Yellow Day was organised at the Green Castle Public School, Sector 47-C, today. The students of kindergarten came dressed in yellow attires. They also brought tiffins of yellow colour. The chairman educated the students on the importance of Baisakhi. The teachers made cut-outs of sunflowers and presented them to the students. The children danced on different tunes and enjoyed the day.

World Heritage Day

World Heritage day was observed at Ryan International School. The students of primary classes made magnificent props of famous monuments of India. They spoke about various measures to protect these monuments for the future generations. The students of senior classes made beautiful posters to educate the masses on the importance of restoring and safeguarding historical monuments. The message conveyed by the children was to sensitise the masses about the preservation of these prized possessions.

Talent hunt competition

Panchkula: A talent hunt competition was organised for the students of Class XI at Satluj Public School, Sector 4, today. The event commenced with school principal Krit Serai welcoming the students. The students put up various performances to showcase their talents. The events included singing songs and performing dances. Fun games such as Bollywood bonanza, musical chairs, guess the song and lost and found were the other highlights of the show. The best performances were awarded with certificates. The students also went for a trip to Sukhna Lake.

Art and craft competition

An inter-house art and craft competition was organised for the students of Classes I to X at Saupin’s School today. The topics for the art and craft competition were nature drawing with water colours — ‘Save Earth’ and pencil shading — ‘pots and vegetables’. The learners were encouraged to keep the school premises clean and decorated. The students portrayed their art and craft skills beautifully. The winner of the competition was Clover House with 43 points. The second, third and fourth positions were bagged by the Maple, Aspen and Sycamore Houses, respectively.

Bone density check-up camp

A bone density check-up camp was organised at DAV Senior Public School, Surajpur, today. A team of doctors from Max Hospital in collaboration with Simply Health Plus visited the school and carried out the tests as per TS core values, guidelines and prescription by the school doctor, Dr Aradhna. She was assisted by medical coordinator Baljinder Kaur. The authorities informed that the aim of conducting the event was to generate awareness among the teachers about the state of their bones and joints and adopt affective measures to ensure their well being.

Orientation programme

Mohali: Ashmah International school organised an orientation programme for the parents of students on the campus here today. Chairman of the school, JS Kesar, said parents played a vital role in the education system and should fully co-operate with the school, honour its rules and procedures for the development of their wards. He also urged the parents to encourage positive attitude in children and ensure constructive interaction. While interacting with the parents, principal Roopinder Ghuman discussed important aspects of good parenting and said, “To provide the best to children, it is necessary that the old system of reviewing should be replaced with dynamic teaching reviews.”

Students apprised of benefits of brushing teeth

The students of the pre-primary section at Ajit Karam Singh International Public School (AKSIPS) Smart School learnt ‘Brushing manners with fairy’ on the campus today. The students were briefed on maintaining dental hygiene. One of the teachers dressed up as a fairy educated the students on the harmful effects of not brushing twice a day. A small movie on a fairy killing germs through brushing was also aired for the students. — TNS



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