C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Aroma murder
Eight accused get 8 yrs in jail
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
The court of Additional District and Sessions Judge KK Kareer today sentenced all the eight convicts to eight years imprisonment for killing a youth outside Aroma Hotel in Sector 22 on the night of January 12, 2012.

The court also imposed a fine of Rs 20,000 each on the eight accused who were convicted in the case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder. Out of the total Rs 1.6 lakh realised as fine from the convicts, an amount of Rs 1.5 lakh will go to the mother of deceased Harmesh Kaur as compensation, said the court.

The court sentenced Sukhjit Singh Sooch, a Mohali resident, Harsimranjeet Singh (28), a resident of Sector 44, Chandan Singh (24), Sandeep Kumar (27), Gautam Singh (23), all residents of Burail, Anand Singh (27) and Mahavir Singh (25), both residents of Sector 41, and Prashant Kumar Dabral (31), a resident of Sector, to eight years in jail.

Stating that it stands amply proved on record that all the eight convicts caused injuries to the deceased, Harminder Singh, following a sudden scuffle with him, which led to his death. The court stated that it could not be oblivious to the fact that the accused caused as many as 21 injuries on the deceased. They were eight in number while the deceased was all alone. Even if the deceased ran after the accused persons and provoked them to fight, even then the act of causing so many injuries could not be said to be justified to persuade the court to take a lenient view, said the court. The act of assault was committed by all the accused and their participation was not at all in doubt. All the accused assaulted Harminder Singh and inflicted blows with whatever they could lay their hands on from the spot such as stone etc and also caused him injuries with fist and kicks blows, said the court.

“Considering the facts that the nature of weapons used in the crime were not deadly, they had not come to the place of occurrence armed with any weapon, the occurrence was a result of sudden fight and there was no previous enmity, it appears to be a case falling under the ambit of Section 304 -II of the IPC”, the court said.

The case

An MBA student, Harminder Singh, who had then recently returned from Ireland had gone to Aroma Coffee shop on the night of January 12, 2012, to have an ice-cream when he got into a scuffle with a group of youths. Dilshaad Ali, security guard at Aroma, in his complaint said six to seven persons came out of the coffee shop and got into a scuffle with the youth. Following arguments, they beat him up. They then tried to flee but Harminder Singh took out a rod from his car and chased them. The youths snatched the rod from Harminder Singh on the rear side of the petrol pump and used the same to hit him. Later, they mowed him down using the same vehicle.



Faux pas by IO, says court
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
While pronouncing the order sentencing the convicts to eight years imprisonment, the Court of ADJ KK Kareer lambasted the investigating officer Inspector Ranjodh Singh in the case for allegedly trying to ‘twist’ facts during his cross examination.

The court called it a ‘poor memory’ or faux pas’ by Inspector Ranjodh Singh when he stated in court that identification of one of the convict Sukhjeet Singh was not identified by an eyewitness. The court stated that this part of the statement was totally against the record of investigation which was conducted by none other than the Inspector himself.

“Inspector Ranjodh Singh tried to twist facts with reasons best known to him but apparently with a malafide intention to bail out accused Sukhjeet Singh,” said the court.

The court had relied on the order of the testimony of an eyewitness, Parminder Singh, who was the star witness and had identified all the accused.

“Inspector Ranjodh Singh, has stated in his examination-in-chief that on January 20, 2012, the arrested accused, Sukhjeet Singh, on the basis of secret information and his personal search had prepared the memo. In his cross examination, the witness crossed all limits when he went on to state that accused Sukhjeet Singh was arrested on January 20, 2012, and was not identified by the eyewitness!” said the court.

The court went on to say that this part of the statement of the witness was totally against the record of investigation which was conducted by none else than the witness himself.

“In this regard, a reference can be made to the statement of constable Mukesh which was recorded by Inspector Ranjodh Singh himself on January 20, wherein, it is clearly stated that Sukhjeet Singh was arrested from Sector 67 on the identification of complainant Dilshad Ali and later on he was identified by Parminder Singh who met the police party on the way back to the police station.

“This court has failed to fathom as to how this glaring discrepancy has occurred in the statement of Ranjodh Singh. It may have been faulty memory or something else but in any case the accused cannot draw any mileage out of this discrepancy or faux pas on the part of the investigator, as in this case, the situation has been saved by testimony of constable Mukesh,” the Court of ADJ KK Kareer said.

We are satisfied, says mother

Victim’s mother Harmesh Kaur stated that she was satisfied with the order of the court. “My son’s soul can now rest in peace,” she said. The deceased’s father, Charan Singh, had died last year following a cardiac arrest. Harmesh now stays with her younger son. She had moved an application seeking ~50 lakh compensation, which has been referred to the District Legal Services Authority by the court.

Court dismisses plea on CCTV footage

The court dismissed the plea of the defence that the prosecution withheld the CCTV footage which it obtained from Aroma hotel and failed to produce it. The court stated that it sounded highly improbable that the CCTV camera installed at the entry point of the hotel could cover the scene of crime which took place at the petrol pump across the road. Unless and until the defence witness throws light on the contents of the footage, no adverse inference can be drawn on the prosecution, the court said.



Spate of thefts in P’kula’s posh areas vexes cops
Police forced to review deployment of field staff
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 13
Thieves are on the prowl in posh sectors of Panchkula forcing the residents to spend sleepless nights. These thieves have forced the Panchkula Police to review the security arrangements and deployment of the entire field force. So far, the thieves have targeted eight high profile families in just 18 days.

In these first of its kind thefts, the Panchkula Police is puzzled with the modus operandi of the miscreants, where mostly LEDs have been stolen by them. The police are suspecting youths with technical background behind the crime. All the incidents have taken place in the jurisdiction of Sector 5 police station.

We have got clues about these youths and have got their sketches prepared. Teams have been constituted to trace them and the cases would be solved soon,” Ajay Singhal, Commissioner of Police (CP), said.

He added, “We had a meeting on Saturday and reviewed the deployment of the force. Instead of seven nakas, we will now have 14 nakas. More staff have been deployed on night duties on various routes (ie from 12 am to 6 am). The routes of the patrolling parties have also been revised.”

In all the incidents, thieves have committed thefts in the presence of the families, who don’t even come to know about any movement in the house. They break open the window, take off the grill and enter. Four houses - one belonging to a former justice of Punjab and Haryana High court and three businessmen- in the same line were targeted on April 23 in Sector 6. Then two houses (one belonging to a businessman and the other to a merchant navy officer) were struck on April 26 in Sector 4, and a councillor’s house in Sector 2 on May 5. Five days (May 11) later a businessman’s house in Sector 7 was targeted.

In the eight strikes, four LEDs from three different houses have been stolen apart from cash and jewellery.

Most probably, they use some sprays so that there is no noise and the family doesn’t come to know about any movement. But it is strange how come the family doesn’t hear the breaking of the window panes,” said a police official.

CCTV footage not clear

Though a glimpse of the thieves was seen in the footage captured by the CCTV cameras in the lane of Sector 2 while they targeted the residence of local councillor Mamta Mittal, it was blurred and the car’s number in which they were taking the stolen material wasn’t clear. Three persons were seen taking the LEDs in the car.

VIP Sectors

Sectors 2 and 4 house defence personnel, police officers and traders. In Sector 6, bureaucrats and judges live, whereas in Sector 7 businessmen reside.

Residents have sleepless nights

VK Sood, a businessman of Sector 6, said, “We are scared. When the thieves know that the families are inside, they will definitely be armed. It involves great risk to life.”



Counting of Votes
Get updates on your mobile phone
Dial 9216164606; register by sending an SMS to get firsthand information
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
Want to know the latest updates on counting? Just send an SMS and get yourself registered for updates on your mobile number.

Officials of the UT Election Department said that subscribers would be getting firsthand and authentic information on counting by sending an SMS on 9216164606. Earlier too, the Election Department had launched a service through which the voters could know about their polling booth on the day of polling, by just sending an SMS.

The department is all set to hold the counting of votes on May 16. There will be total 19 rounds of counting. The number of votes polled to each candidate will be announced after every round. Over 200 people will be involved in the counting process that will start at 8 am and will end in the evening.

The counting of votes will be held at the Chandigarh College of Engineering and Technology (CCET), Sector 26, amid tight security.

There were total 519 polling booths during the elections across the city where 4,53,314 voters turned up to exercise their franchise. Chandigarh recorded the highest ever voter turnout of 73.84 per cent. The officials said that there would be 28 tables where the EVMs of 28 booths will be opened for counting. “One agent of each candidate will be allowed to be present at every table to monitor the counting process”, the officials said.

The Area Returning Officers (AROs) will also be present at the counting centre during the counting. The officials further said that the supporters of the candidates wouldn’t be allowed inside the college premises. “A screen would be installed outside the counting centre so that the supporters can watch the result”, the officials said.

On counting day

  • Over 200 people to take part in the counting process
  • No. of votes polled to each candidate to be announced after each round
  • Supporters of candidates will not be allowed inside the college premises
  • Result expected to be declared by 6 pm



Jitters for liquor contractors
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
A clause of showing ‘legal possession’ of a property in the UT’s new excise policy is giving jitters to liquor contractors in the city.

In withdrawal from the earlier practice when the liquor shop licence seekers had to submit a simple affidavit regarding possession of the property where they intended to run the liquor shops.

Over the years, the department kept on receiving complaints from the owners of the property regarding the disputes with their tenants.

Sources in the trade reveal that a number of shops were running from rented accommodations for the last many years, but the owners of the property were seeking eviction on one or the other count.

In some cases, the tenants had gone in court. In other cases, the original liquor traders, who could not bid for vends, further entered in to partnership agreement with another liquor trader to run the business.

Giving their side of the story, the stakeholders said ever since the tin sheds had been banned by the court, running business from showrooms had become an unproductive proposition. “Either one takes a showroom on a monthly rent of Rs 3 lakh or continues to sit in a disputed property as the same location matters a lot in the trade”, confided a stakeholder.

But to end the practice, the department has incorporated the clause that the licencee will have to prove legal possession of the space before opening a vend.

The Excise Department has fixed the reserve price of vends.



Parole misuse: Now, convict’s plea for suspension of sentence rejected
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
Nearly two weeks after the Punjab and Haryana High Court took serious view of the grant of parole to a rape convict twice within three months of his conviction, his plea for suspension of sentence was today turned down by a Division Bench.

Rejecting Manjit Singh’s plea, Justice Satish Kumar Mittal and Justice Kuldeep Singh asserted: “There is no grant of suspension of sentence as there are several similar matters pending in the courts”. His plea for extending parole too was rejected.

As the case came up for resumed hearing, counsel for the Chandigarh Administration told the court that the UT police had granted parole to Manjit Singh under provisions of law. The records were verified after obtaining information from the Mohali Police, and he was released on emergency parole due to his wife’s illness.

Manjit Singh had moved the High Court for the extension of parole granted by the UT Inspector General of Prisons for another six weeks due to the illness of his wife.

The Bench observed that the petitioner was convicted for rape and criminal intimidation under Sections 376 and 506 of the IPC. He was substantively sentenced on November 18, 2013, to undergo rigorous imprisonment for 12 years, but was granted emergency parole for 28 days.

In response to the direction, UT Inspector General of Prisons Maneesh Chaudhary appeared before the Bench with senior advocate RS Rai for the Union Territory of Chandigarh. “It has been brought to our notice that earlier to the grant of the aforesaid parole to the petitioner, one more parole was granted to the petitioner by AIG of Prisons, UT, in the capacity of Superintendent, Model Jail, Chandigarh. We have our doubt with regard to grant of parole to an accused of heinous crime of such a nature twice within a period of three months of his conviction”.

Before parting with the case, the Bench had observed: “Senior counsel appearing on behalf of the UT, Chandigarh, seeks time to apprise this court by filing of a detailed affidavit stating under what circumstances, for which reason and on what ground, parole was granted to the petitioner…. The parole granted to the petitioner was extended by this court till today. We do not find any ground to further extend the parole granted to the petitioner”.



Exit poll: The leaders’ take
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
As counting for the Parliamentary election is scheduled for May 16, various agencies have conducted exit poll results for the Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat.

The four prominent candidates in the fray are also eagerly awaiting the results of the mandate in their constituency.

Voters in the city are also waiting for the results with bated breath.

Even as exit polls predict a clear win for the BJP, the candidates themselves are not sure about the predictions made by the agencies. The prominent candidates from the city, who contested for the Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat, give their take on the issue.

Speaking out

I am not into all this. The polls are over and the results will be declared on May 16. I don’t want to comment on the exit polls.

Pawan Kumar Bansal, Congress candidate

I don’t have any take on the exit polls. I will wait for the final verdict and respect what the voters of Chandigarh have decided.

Gulkirat Kaur Panag, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate

I don’t want to comment on the exit polls for the Chandigarh LS seat. The counting of votes is to be held soon. Let’s wait for the result.

Kirron Kher, BJP candidate

I don’t believe in the exit polls conducted by various agencies. I am waiting for May 16. Things will be clear on the day of counting.

Jannat Jahan Ul-Haq, BSP candidate


Public toilets remain shut for 2nd day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
As many as 86 public toilets in the city remained closed for the second day today as the local municipal corporation (MC) does not have staff to operate and maintain them.

The MC took over toilets from the Selvel Media Services Pvt Ltd, which was earlier operating and maintaining them.

The 86 toilets are spread across in sectors 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 23, 29, 30, 26, 27, 28, 33, 34, 35, 37, 38, 40, 41, 46, 47 and 48 along with Dadu Majra, Mani Majra and Burail.

While a majority of the toilets were locked on Monday, the remaining were locked today.

Manju Khantwal, who visited Sector 29 market with her family, said they were surprised to find the toilets at the market locked. “My 12-year-old child wanted to use a toilet in Sector 29 but it was locked. We went to Sector 30, but the toilet there was locked too,” she said.

Members of the Sector 44 Market Association also peeved at the MC’s move of locking down the toilets.

“If the MC was supposed to take over the toilets, they should have made some arrangements to operate them. Locking them down has resulted in harassment to scores of people,” said Mandeep Singh, a city resident.

With the toilets being transferred back to the MC, two employees, including a female, were required for each toilet. Besides, a security guard was required to man toilets during night hours.

An MC official said they were soon going to re-invite tenders for allotment of operation and maintenance of public toilets.

Congress councillor Pardeep Chhabra stated that he had taken up the issue with the Chief Engineer to outsource the operation and maintenance of toilets till the time tenders are re-invited.



lok sabha elections
Mohali all set for counting of votes: DEO

Mohali, May 13
All arrangements have been made for the counting of votes for the SAS Nagar and Kharar segments of the Anandpur Sahib parliamentary constituency here on May 16.

The counting process for the Lok Sabha elections will start under strict security at 8 am here. Nobody will be allowed to disturb law and order in the district, District Electoral Officer-cum-Deputy Commissioner Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu said today. The DEO said the counting of votes for the segments of SAS Nagar and Kharar would be held at Shivalik Public School, Phase VI. For the Dera Bassi assembly segment, the counting would be done at Rajpura.

As many as 126 officers would be deputed for the purpose. Besides, reserve counting staff of 15 personnel would also be present.

Sidhu directed the counting staff to report at the counting centre by 6 am on May 16 along with their photo identity cards. He said the authorised counting agents would monitor the counting process at their respective tables. He said to tackle any technical problem, EVM engineers would also be present at the counting centres.

A media room had been set up near the counting centre wherein facilities like internet, fax, etc would be available, he added. — OC



Chartered flight from city to Shimla in the offing
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
In a good news for tourists, a non-scheduled air operator permit holder is planning to offer flight services from Chandigarh to Shimla soon.

The Himalayan Bulls Private Limited Company is mulling to add popular tourist destination Shimla in their ongoing Chandigarh-Kullu eight-seater chartered flight. The aim is to provide a boost to the already running Chandigarh-Kullu flight service.

The company — which has already made a trial run on the Chandigarh-Shimla air route — is still working on the flight’s time-run, feasibility and time schedule.

The Shimla airport is located in Jabarhatti, 22 kilometres from Shimla.

“At present, we have a 8-seater chartered flight. We hope more visitors hop onto the chartered flight with Shimla as its new destination. The actual plan is to connect Kullu with Shimla and then Chandigarh. Hopefully, we will get a good response,” said Pankaj Bakshi, one of the owners of the company.

Asked about the timings and the feasibility of the flight, he said, “We are still in the dark over the availability of the schedule timings as we are a non-scheduled air operator. We rely on permissions and availability. Our ongoing Chandigarh-Kullu flights are receiving a good response. We have to maintain that service too. We will meet the authorities concerned on May 20 and chalk out a further plan.”

Regarding the travel fare, Bakshi said, “We are yet to decide on this. The fare will be decided after we get the approval.”

Holiday packages fail to attract visitors

Even as summer vacations are round the corner, holiday packages to foreign locations have failed to evoke interest among the city residents. According to the local travel agents, the tourism market is low as compared to last year. “Compared to last year, there are only a few takers for holiday packages to foreign locations this year. Thailand, Singapore, Mauritius, Europe and Australia continue to be the favourite destinations. The business is likely to pick up by June,” said the owner of Link World Travellers, Sector 17.



Western disturbances bring more rain to city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
The frequency of western disturbances causing unprecedented rainfall in a month in the city has increased since December 2013, leading to frequent showers.

According to weather officials, unlike in the recent years when not more than 4 or 5 western disturbances were reported in a month, the frequency has doubled since December 2013 in the city.

The city witnessed heavy rainfall in the early and evening hours on Tuesday, that kept the mercury down, bringing respite to residents from the soaring temperature.

“The frequency of unprecedented rainfall has increased in the past six months here. This development has not been seen in the past recent years. The western disturbances have increased,” said Surinder Paul, Director, Chandigarh Meteorological Department.

The temperature is likely to remain low in the next two days with the possibility of light to moderate rain.

The maximum temperature recorded today was 30.1 Degrees Celsius.

The weather is likely to remain dry after May 16, as per the predictions of the Chandigarh Met Department. The days will remain party cloudy till May 15.

What is Western disturbance?

Western disturbance is the term used to define the storm originating out of the Mediterranean Sea, that causes sudden rain or snow in the north-western parts, including Chandigarh, of the Indian subcontinent.



Police team arrives to arrest PO, thrashed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
A police party from Mohali was allegedly assaulted when it went to arrest a proclaimed offender (PO) from a wedding venue at a hotel in Sector 35. The PO, Prithipal Singh, wanted in a cheque bounce case, came outside JW Marriott Hotel when he got to know about the presence of policemen.

He immediately summoned his brothers, who along with him allegedly thrashed the police party. They disappeared after entering the hotel around 8.45pm.

The police have registered an FIR against the PO and his two brothers, including Kanwar Pal Singh, Gurinder Singh and others for thrashing, creating hindrance in government duty and making an attempt to snatch ammunition from policemen.

In the police complaint, ASI Dilbag said, “Kanwar Pal Singh and Gurinder Singh along with some youths arrived and punched one of our team members. All of them ran inside the hotel thereafter.”

ASI Dilbag claimed the entire incident was recorded on CCTV cameras of the hotel and he could identify other accomplices through the footage.

The hotel management has been directed to submit the CCTV footage of the entry gate where the police party was thrashed. Raids are being conducted to arrest the PO and his accomplices, said the police.

Prithipal Singh was declared a proclaimed offender on the complaint of one Jaswinder by a local court of Mohali in 2010.



Beant Singh Memorial
Committee approves conceptual drawings for remaining buildings
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
The meeting of the executive committee of the Beant Singh Memorial and Chandigarh Centre for Performing and Visual Arts, Sector 42, was held under the chairmanship of KK Sharma, Adviser to the Administrator.

The committee gave its approval to the conceptual drawings for the remaining buildings of the memorial.

These include the Sarvdharam Repository, cafeteria, exhibition-cum-multipurpose hall, guest house and convention centre-cum-auditorium block and parking.

Consultants will be hired for the interior work of these buildings. The UT Chief Engineer was directed to prepare a rough estimate for the construction of these buildings and also indicate the funds required during the current financial year, so that the budgetary approval may be obtained from the governing body of the memorial.

Meanwhile, the state government will release the balance funds of Rs 4.001 crore after June, when the budget is passed. G Ramesh Kumar, IAS, Secretary Finance, Punjab, Nakul Dev Singh, Under Secretary, representative of Principal Secretary to CM, Balbir Singh Dhol, Director, Beant Singh Memorial Society and senior architects attended the meeting.



PGI health worker receives award from President
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
President Pranab Mukherjee conferred the National Florence Nightingale Award-2014 on Sunita Sharma, Female Multipurpose Worker, School of Public Health, PGIMER, at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi, on Monday.

Sharma has been working as a health worker in an urban resettlement colony in the Urban Health and Training Centre (UHTC) under the Department of Community Medicine, School of Public Health, PGIMER, for the past 18 years.

The colony mainly comprises migrant labourers from various states and a majority of them belong to economically weaker sections. The population of this colony is around 27,000.

Nurses Day celebrated

To mark the birth anniversary of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing profession, the International Nurses Week is being celebrated at PGIMER from May 12-17. Every year, May 12 is celebrated as the International Nurses Day to commemorate the birth anniversary of Florence Nightingale. The theme for this year is “Nurses: A force for change — a vital resource for health.” The week-long activities commenced with an inaugural function, organised at the Lecture Theatre, PGIMER.



Dept fails to provide books to students
Mehakdeep Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
Despite 40 days since the beginning of the new academic session, the Education Department has failed to provide books of various subjects to government schoolchildren. Students of Class VIII of government model schools have still not received their English and social science books, while students across all classes are yet to receive Punjabi books.

The condition of non-model government schools is also no better as students of Class IV are yet to receive mathematics books (Ganith ka Jadu), while Class VIII students are waiting for their social science (Samajik Vigyan) and history (Humara Atit-Part II) books.

Books for the students of government model schools, along with books for the girls of non-model government schools, are purchased by the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan Committee, while books for the boys of non-model government schools are procured by the District Education Office.

It is pertinent to mention here that last year by October, the department was able to distribute the books among the students. Before that, the books were distributed in instalments.

While the department has not made sufficient arrangements to procure the books, some schools have already asked the students to borrow books from their neighbours, friends and siblings.

Authorities said teachers were teaching the students as per the previous year’s syllabus. A teacher on the condition of anonymity said: “We are not even sure what we are teaching to students will actually be in the syllabus since the department has still not issued us the syllabus. Right now, we are teaching the students the basic concepts of the subjects.”

The students who have been attending classes without some of their textbooks said: “We are just given notes by our teachers. It is difficult for us to do revision at home without textbooks. For the past one month, we are being taught only grammar in the English class. We are not being taught literature at all as most of us do not have textbooks.”

Due to the department’s apathy, some parents have already purchased books for their wards.

Vibha Thareja, principal of Government Model High School, Sector 38(W), said: “We have made a book bank in the school where we ask pass-out students to deposit their previous year’s books so that these can be given to other students.”

Most of the school authorities blamed the Lok Sabha elections for the delay in the procurement of books. Principals across the city said with the poll code of conduct in force, the procurement of books had been delayed.

Swarn Singh Kamboj, president of the UT Cadre Educational Employees Union, said: “This is not the first time that there has been a delay in the procurement of books. Due to the lackadaisical attitude of the authorities, studies of students are being affected. The department has to procure the books from the NCERT. Still, they delay the process. What’s the point of distributing books for free, if the students are not able to get these in time.”

Meanwhile, repeated attempts to contact District Education Officer Ram Kumar Sharma proved futile.



Commission inspects govt schools at Dhanas
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
The Chandigarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights inspected government schools at Dhanas. It identified a range of inadequacies and lacunae in the infrastructure and management of the schools.

Officials pointed out that the two schools - Government Senior Secondary School and Government Model Middle School - are running from the same campus and are being forced to cope with the unavailability of staff.

“There is a single counsellor for both schools. It is must for each school to have at least one dedicated counsellor. Both schools manage with a single teacher for physical education also,” said Devi Sirohi, chairperson of the commission.

“Apart from what we observed, we found that the children were highly keen to have a better sports culture and infrastructure in the school. They also showed a keen interest in starting classes for general knowledge,” she said.

The commission pointed out that there were not enough water coolers in the schools. Library facilities were far from adequate.

“While the middle school does not have any library, there is no librarian to handle the library at the senior secondary school,” Sirohi said.

The commission will now send its recommendation to the Director Public Instructions (Schools). Earlier, the commission inspected government schools in Sectors 37 and 38.



Strive hard to realise your dreams, young achiever tells students

Panchkula, May 13
Virender Raika (21), a labourer’s son who has been offered Rs 4.85 crore package by Microsoft Corporation, visited two schools here and interacted with students.

In a motivating session with students of The Gurukul, Sector 20, here, Raika, a prodigy from Kurukshetra, made them realise that lack of funds does not mean lack of strength to do something great.

Appreciating the hard work and success of Raika, the director of The Gurukul, Sanjay Thareja, gifted him a laptop for his future endeavours.

The students listened to Raika’s story and got motivated to emulate him.

Raika said he was happy with the offer, but his dreams were much higher. He wanted to pursue higher studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He motivated the students to strive hard to realise their dreams.

Principal Harsimran Kaur said: “It has always been our endeavour to instil the value of hard work into students. This interactive session made the students realise that hard work and patience always win the battle against poverty and hardships”.

Raika also visited Bhavan Vidyalaya, Sector 15, here, and shared his experiences with the students.

Shashi Banerjee, principal of the school, exhorted the students to scale such heights in the life. — TNS



Food production course for disabled launched
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 13
The Chandigarh Child and Women Development Corporation in association with the Ambedkar Institute of Hotel Management, Sector 42, today launched a food production course for persons with disabilities at Aasha Kiran in Sector 46 here.

Rajesh Jogpal, director of the UT Social Welfare Department, said the duration of the basic course in food production would be of two months and a stipend of Rs 2,000 would be provided by the department to each student. The first batch of 20 speech and hearing impaired students started from today at Aasha Kiran.

The Ambedkar Institute of Hotel Management would be the technical partner for the programme, which will provide the faculty for the course. The instructor will be assisted by the Sign Language Training Instructor of the corporation at Aasha Kiran for communicating with the students for the instructions.

A food production training centre was also inaugurated by Home Secretary Anil Kumar. Kumar said this was one of the most upcoming fields for employment not only in India but also in foreign countries.

He told the students that currently they would be providing the basics of food production in this programme. Shortly, an advanced programme for it would also be started.



From Schools
Mother’s Day celebrated

Panchkula: Doon Public School, Sector 21, celebrated Mother’s Day. A plethora of fun-filled activities, including logo quiz, tie-tying competition and saree-tying competition, were organised for mothers. Panchkula Mayor Upendra Ahaluwalia was the chief guest on the occasion. Aakashdeep and Vikrant Singh mesmerised the audience with heart-touching songs dedicated to mothers. The students entertained the mothers with poems, dances and songs. Students of the primary wing made beautiful cards for their mothers. Aarti Ghosh, Gunjan Pardasani and Kukku Madhuri were adjudged “super moms”.
Children enjoy at a splash pool party at Mind Tree School in Kharar on Tuesday
Children enjoy at a splash pool party at Mind Tree School in Kharar on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

St Soldier’s School

St Soldier’s School, Sector 16, celebrated Mother’s Day in a unique way. Mothers of kindergarten students came to the school in sporty dresses and participated in fun games. Prizes were distributed among the winners of different games.

DAV School

Mother’s Day was celebrated in a grand way at DAV School. The multimedia hall of the school wore a festive look. The programme began with a welcome song. It was followed by songs, games and talk by school councillors. A prize distribution function was also held on the occasion. - TNS



PU and college notes
Results of photography contest

Panjab University declared the results of a photography contest on Tuesday. Deepak Arora and Mohit Kumar Gautam emerged the winners. In the “Glimpses of PU Today: Architecture/Campus/Students” category, Deepak Arora won the first prize, while Nandini Paul and Ravkaran Singh won the second and third prizes, respectively. Sumit Malhotra, Rajesh Khurana and Deepak Arora have been adjudged the winners of consolation prizes in the category. In the “PU Legacy/Heritage” category, Mohit Kumar Gautam won the first prize, while Rajesh Khurana and Vijendra Trighatia won the second and third prizes, respectively. Parmod Kumar Gautam, Preeti Singh and Jessu Jaskanwar Singh have been adjudged the winners of consolation prizes in the category.

Date for submitting forms extended

Panjab University has extended the last date for submitting manual application forms for BA/BCom LLB (Hons) five-year integrated course and PU-CET (UG) 2014 till May 15 up to 4 PM. Any student who might have missed the due date to apply for these two entrance tests may apply till May 15. But he/she will have to pay Rs 10,000 as late fee. The interested candidates should contact the CET Cell, Aruna Ranjit Chandra Hall, PU campus, with their passport size photograph and signatures in pen drive along with draft in favour of Registrar, Panjab University, Chandigarh, for Rs 10,000 (as late fee) and online application form fee i.e. Rs 1,000 (for general category), Rs 500 (for SC/ST) and Rs 1,600 (for general category) and Rs 800 (for SC/ST category) for PU BA/BCom LLB (Hons) five-year integrated course and PU-CET (UG), respectively.

Timings of entrance test changed

PU has changed the timings of the PU-BA/BCom LLB (Hons) five-year integrated course entrance test. The timings are 3 PM to 4:30 PM instead of 10 AM to 11:30 AM. The date of the entrance test is same, i.e. May 18.

Gurbani study programme concludes

A four-day Gurbani Impact Study Programme concluded at Panjab University, Chandigarh Campus. The programme was organised under the major project sanctioned by the University Grants Commission with Prof Jaspal Kaur Kaang, chairperson of the Department of Guru Nanak Sikh Studies, PU, as its principal investigator.

350 students get degrees

The Sri Sukhmani Group of Institutions held its 12th annual convocation. Around 350 students were conferred degrees in different disciplines. Dr MP Poonia, Director, NITTTR, was the chief guest. The convocation began with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp, followed by shabad by final-year students. Dr GN Verma, principal, Sri Sukhmani Institute of Engineering and Technology, and Bhanu Vig, principal, Sri Sukhmani Institute of Hotel Management, presented the annual report of the college.

Placement drives

The Training & Placement Department of SASIIT, Mohali, has managed to rope in over 30 corporate clients to participate in campus and off-campus placement drives. Companies such as Crystal Crop Protection, Club Mahindra, Magic Holidays, Deft-Soft Informatics, Soft Prodigy, Kindle Bit IT Solutions, Videocon, ICICI Bank, IDBI Bank and Cosmos Life Sciences Pharmacy participated in the placement drives. The current outgoing batch has seen around 75 per cent students marching towards challenging industrious assignments and roles. - TNS



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