C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


sexual harassment, assault cases
Finally, Education Dept swings into action
Decides to make Student Grievance Redressal Forum mandatory in schools
Mehakdeep Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
It took two assaults and a case of sexual harassment to wake up the Education Department from deep slumber, which has now, finally decided to form a student grievance redressal forum in every school.

In less than a months time, three major incidents, including a sexual harassment case on four Class XII girl students by two male teachers from Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 38 (West), assault on Class I student by evening Government Senior Secondary (junior wing), Dhanas, school in charge, that resulted in the victim getting a fractured arm, and a brawl between students of GMSSS, Sector 35 students, where seniors allegedly bashed their junior resulting in the victim getting a head injury, shocked the Education Department.

Meanwhile, reacting to the incidents that occurred in government schools within the span of one month, Education Secretary Sarvjit Singh said, “Following the incident that occurred at GMSSS-38 (W), the department has decided to form a grievance redressal forum in every school. The panel of the forum, include one male and female teacher along with two sets of parents, who will be nominated by the principal.”

Singh added that the forum would be available at a designated place in every school. It will function every Friday from closing hour of the school till two hours after it.

“All students will be notified about the forum so that they can register their complaints of harassment/ragging or bullying with the forum,” he said.

The Education Secretary further said that the complaints will be submitted to the principal of the school on the same day, who, will immediately address the issue and take corrective measures within a week.

notice issued to accused Gmsss-38 teacher
The Education Department has formed a two-member committee comprising the District Education Officer (DEO) and the Director, School Education-II, to probe the GMSSS-38 sexual harassment case and submit its report within a week. A notice has been issued to one of the accused teacher, Mukesh Kumar.



GMSSS-38 case
Four girl students record statements
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Statements of four girl students of Government Model Senior Secondary School in Sector 38 were recorded in court before the Magistrate under Section 164 of the CrPC today. The four students stated before the court the harassment they faced at the hands of the teacher and supported the allegations they made in the police FIR registered at the Sector 39 police station yesterday.

One of the students told the court that both teachers used to harass them and pass lewd comments. There had been incidents in the past when the teachers tried to forcibly establish physical contact with them. One of the four girl students alleged that the teacher said that she should not worry about her marks in the exam and invited her to come to his residence for tuition classes when no one was there.Narrating the trauma, the girl student alleged that Mukesh used to hold her hand and asked her to accompany him to a fast-food joint. They also stated that Mukesh tried to make physical contact with them.

In their statements against Ashok, the girl alleged that he used to scold them and use vulgar language when they went to drink water.

One-day police remand for one accused

One of the arrested accused teacher, Mukesh, was produced in court on Friday and sent to one-day police remand. The prosecution told the court that they were yet to unearth more facts in the case and hence custodial interrogation of the accused was required. He was arrested from his native place in Hisar. Meanwhile, the police teams have been dispatched to arrest the other accused teacher Ashok from Haryana. Inspector Gurmukh Singh, SHO, Sector 39 police station, said the second accused will be arrested soon.



Golf Club lease row
Chandigarh Golf Club moves SC
Hearing scheduled for next week
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Chandigarh Golf Club (CGC) today moved the Supreme Court challenging the recent order of the Punjab and Haryana High Court in connection with the lease row between the CGC and the Chandigarh Administration.

The management committee of the Chandigarh Golf Club (CGC) today filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the recent order of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The petition will now come up for hearing next week.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court last month had stayed the impugned demand made by the Chandigarh Administration, subject to deposit of 50 per cent amount (Rs 4.30 crore) lease amount.

Deputy Commissioner-cum-Estate Officer Mohammed Shayin had issued a notice to the president of the Chandigarh Golf Club asking him to deposit Rs 8.59 crore within 15 days as the lease rent from March 16, 2008, to March 15, 2014.

Confirming the development, CGC president BS Gill said they had filed a petition in the Supreme Court today.

Gill said, “Our main contention is that the UT Administration should fix the Chandigarh Golf Club’s lease amount on the pattern of that of the Delhi Golf Club. The Delhi Golf Club pays less than Rs 6 lakh per annum as the lease rent, whereas the UT Administration is demanding Rs 1.68 crore from the Chandigarh Golf Club for 2013-14. Moreover, the Delhi Golf Club sprawls over 179 acre as compared to the Chandigarh Golf Club, which is spread over 132 acre. The value of the Delhi Golf Club land is much higher than that of Chandigarh”, he argued.

Earlier, Attempts made by the High Court to sort out the lease issue between the CGC and UT Administration through mediation could not succeed. Justice Kuldip Singh was appointed as a mediator by the High Court to resolve the row over the renewal of lease between the CGC and the Administration. The High Court had earlier made it clear that it wanted the Administration and the club to put their heads together and resolve the row.

money matter
In November 2012, the UT Administration had fixed Rs 1.61 crore per annum as the lease amount. Besides, the club was asked to pay Rs 9.27 crore, including interest, as rent for the period from March 16, 2008, to March 15, 2013. But last month, the UT Deputy Commissioner issued a fresh letter asking the Chandigarh Golf Club to deposit Rs 8.59 crore within 15 days as the lease rent from March 16, 2008, to March 15, 2014.

August 25, 1966: Chandigarh Golf Club (CGC) registered under the Registration of Societies Act
November 16, 2012: Administration proposes fresh lease terms for the club, demands Rs 9.27 crore
December 21, 2012: The CGC sends representation to the UT Estate Officer
December 22, 2012: The CGC sends representation to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs
January 15, 2013: The CGC approaches the Punjab and Haryana High Court
January 16, 2013: The HC directs the parties to resolve issue amicably, restrains coercive action
February 2, 2013: Former Supreme Court Judge Kuldip Singh appointed mediator to resolve the lease row
July 19: DC asks the CGC management to deposit Rs 8.59 crore as lease amount within 15 days
July 24: The Punjab and Haryana High Court stays the impugned demand made by the Chandigarh Administration, subject to deposit of 50 per cent lease amount.
August 8: The Golf Club files petition in the Supreme Court.



Racket busted at RLA
Class IV employee, agents in spot for extracting money from applicants
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Registration and Licensing Authority (RLA) today busted a racket of agents who in connivance with a Class IV employee of the RLA, Sector 17 branch, used to get files deposited at the branch after charging money from applicants. The UT Vigilance Department was today informed by the RLA following which a case against the sweeper has been registered.

RLA Kashish Mittal stated that the complainant Mehakdeep met an agent who offered to get the file of his sister’s learner license deposited out of the turn by charging Rs 3,000. “The complainant struck a deal with the agent for Rs 1,700”, the RLA said.

The complainant who was keen on exposing the nexus between the agents and the RLA employee approached the RLA with the video recording of the agent and a sweeper of the RLA identified as Rakesh.

“The video shows Rakesh getting the file deposited out of turn. Based on the video and sound recordings I informed the Vigilance Department”, the RLA said.

Sources stated that the Vigilance Department detained the sweeper for questioning. Inspector (Vigilance) Gurjeet Kaur said that a case had been registered and an investigation had been initiated. “We are also probing the role of other RLA employees”, she said.

The RLA said that he had also requested the Deputy Commissioner to take action against the sweeper. “I have also asked the Vigilance Department to probe if the dealing clerk was also a part of the nexus”, the RLA said.

Officials stated that in a bid to end the nexus between the agents and the RLA employees similar checks will be conducted in future.



NIELIT building collapse
Owners told to remove debris
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Two months after the devastating fire at the National Institute of Electronics and Information Technology (NIELIT) — that killed two firemen during its collapse — the UT has now asked the owners of the property to remove the debris within 15 days.

Assistant Estate Officer Balbir Singh Dhol said the cause of the mishap and the repair of the adjoining building (SCO 117-118) was only possible after the debris were removed from the site.The property is owned by Panchkula-based Trehan’s.

On the other hand, Nitin Trehan, one of the owners, said they had communicated to the Estate Office that they lacked the expertise to remove the debris as it could damage the adjoining building. At present, the site has been cordoned off in view of public safety and policemen have been deputed there to keep off the passersby.

“The exact cause of the mishap, be it a fault in the air-conditioning system or some tampering with the structure, can be ascertained only after the debris is removed. The order to remove the debris should have been taken earlier so that the inquiry could be completed”, said a senior UT official

Last month, a structural safety expert and a former PEC professor, DR IC Syal, in his report to the DC had advised the UT to remove the debris after taking precautionary measures. Syal had also advised that the building (SCO 117-118), adjoining the damaged NILET building could be occupied after repairing the damaged portions. No major structural damage has been caused to the building.

2 months on, UT unclear on what caused fire

The committee headed by a former (ADC), Tanvi Garg, failed to give the reasons as to what led to the mishap, since the debris could not be removed. The committee held six meetings, the last being on July 15. The committee has only given a set of recommendations on fire and structural safety of other buildings in Sector 17. The onus for the reasons behind the fire has been put on the police and the Fire Department.

UT dithers from responsibility
Earlier, the UT Engineering Department expressed its inability to structurally access the building (SCO 117-118) that was suspected to have suffered damage due to the collapse of the adjoining NIELIT building. Now, the responsibility of removing the debris under technical guidance has also been put on the owner, despite the fact that it was a specialised exercise.


Shops easy target for robbers
Despite theft incidents, jewellery shops in city, P’kula still without security guards
Ritika Jha Palial/Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh/Panchkula, August 8
Despite being on the hit-list of robbers, a majority of jewellery shops in Chandigarh and Panchkula continue to operate without security guards.

Even though four days have passed after an armed youth shot at a salesman of a jewellery shop and fled with 18 gold chains in Sector 22, jewellers are yet to implement safety measures.

A reality check by Chandigarh Tribune revealed that a majority of jewellery shops (medium-scale), in Chandigarh and Panchkula, are without security personnel.

The gravity of the issue can be gauged from the fact that even jewellers in Sector 22, where the robbery incident took place, have also failed to initiate any measures.

While some jewellers said it was difficult for each one of them to hire security guards, other cited concerns of losing out on customers due to imposition of measures such as checking bags or security locks at the doors.

“A jeweller who has a meagre income and pays salary to his workers cannot shell out extra bucks on hiring guards. Besides, we need police assistance rather than ensuring security measures all by ourselves,” said Prince, owner of Prince Jewellers, Sector 22.

Deep Krishan, President, Jewellers’ Association of Panchkula, said, “We keep a close watch on the movement of customers now. It may reflect upon our customer base, but we are bound to take security measures.”

Strengthening security apparatus
In view of the robbery incident in Sector 22, the Chandigarh Jewellers’ Association has proposed to replace the existing 20 CCTV cameras with high resolution night-vision cameras, increasing armed security guards from 15 to 30 and watchmen on night duty from four to eight.

Crime file
On August 4, an armed youth shot at a jewellery shop salesman and fled with 18 gold chains in Sector 22. The salesman sustained serious injuries.

Many jewellers are getting customer alert-automatic door locking system and neighbour alert bells. Once the customer enters, the door automatically locks and the remote is with the owner. In the neighbour alert bell, an alarm raises at the neighbour’s shop if the owner is in a trouble.

‘Willing to give armed licences’
We are more than willing to provide armed licences to jewellers. I met a few jewellers recently and there are certain formalities that need to be completed. I will make sure that those are expedited but
I need their initiation.
— Rahul Sharma,
Deputy Commissioner of Police



sector 22 theft
Hoax call about robber has police on toes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The UT police was on its toes today after a hoax phone call was received that the robber, seen in the CCTV footage of Karan jewellers in Sector 22, was spotted in Sector 17.

The caller stated that the robber had boarded a Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) bus.

A combing operation was launched and when the bus registration number was verified, it was found that it was not a CTU bus.

The police said such exercises had become a routine affair in the last three days ever since the authorities had announced a cash prize of Rs 50,000 for providing vital clues leading to the robber’s arrest.

The police have questioned many youths residing in Zirakpur, Baltana and Mohali but all in vain.

Two crime branch teams have returned from Amritsar and Ludhiana, while another is still camping in Punjab

On August 4, a robber had shot a salesman and robbed 18 gold chains from KRJ Karan Jewellers in Sector 22. A case was registered at Sector 17 police station. 



MC to celebrate Teej today
Tribune News Service

Preparations for the Teej celebrations under progress at the Shivalik Garden in Mani Majra on Friday.
Preparations for the Teej celebrations under progress at the Shivalik Garden in Mani Majra on Friday. Tribune Photo: Manoj Mahajan

Chandigarh, August 8
The Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh will celebrate Teej Festival at the Shivalik Garden, Mani Majra, on Saturday.

Renowned Punjabi folk singer from the North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC) along with other singers will perform during the event.

The heritage collections of Punjab and Haryana will be the main attractions.

Stalls of mehandi, Phulkari and paintings will be set up.

MC Mayor HC Kalyan said various stalls would be set up during the Teej celebrations, including folk art and craft, mehandi, solo and group folk songs, traditional food and craft. Artistes would also perform giddha, Rajasthani and Haryanvi dance forms.



‘Improve signages on women helpline’

Chandigarh, August 8
The Chandigarh Police needs to install signages, hoardings or advertisements highlighting helpline numbers where a woman can call during distress, suggested experts while discussing issues related to safety of women, here at the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Headquarters today.

“Technology, strong character, change of mindset and courage within us is the only solution to the present challenges of providing safety and security to women,” said Prof Amarjeet Kaur, Director, Centre for Disaster Management Studies, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi.

“Women are not even safe at homes, what to talk of offices or in transit. We often hear about cases of domestic violence, sexual assaults and rapes by cousins, close aides, friends or paternal and maternal uncles,” said Neelam Mansingh Chowdhry, a theatre artist based in Chandigarh. — TNS



PGI gets land for health centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Municipal Corporation today allocated 0.3 acres of land in the Indira Colony to the School of Public Health, PGIMER, for running an urban health training centre (UHTC).

The centre had been functioning from the building of the Social Welfare Department since 2003.

The centre caters to around 30,000 people living in the area.

Mayor Harphool Chander Kalyan in the presence of Municipal Commissioner Vivek Pratap Singh councillor Desraj Gupta allocated the piece of land to the PGIMER. 



Sukhna Lake sans basic amenities
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Irregular drinking water supply and unkempt public toilets greet visitors and joggers to the Sukhna Lake.

A reality check revealed that there was no drinking water in any of the stand post located along the 3-km track.

“Despite spending lakhs on the beautification of the track and other facilities to attract tourists, the Chandigarh Administration is not able to maintain water supply and other public amenities at the lake. It is a matter of concern,” said Sardul Singh, who was seen looking for potable water at the lake on this afternoon.

The drinking water was available only at the entrance to the lake, near the boating club area. The SDO, UT Public Health, Sanjay Sahni, said water supply was provided during the morning and evening supply hours of the MC.

“Additional facility to store water was required,” he said.

Two unkempt toilets also presented a poor picture. There was no water supply and toilet seats were dirty and blocked. The toilet also emanated foul smell. Even sanitary fittings were found missing.

“It presents a poor picture of the UT Administration. A large number of tourists visit the lake,” said Ravinder Sharma, another visitor.

However, junior engineer of the MC Surat Lal said fresh tenders had been given to contractors to maintain the toilets. The previous contractor had left the maintenance work.



New hope for patients with recurrent heart blockage
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
There is a ray of hope for patients with recurrent heart ailments. Perhaps for the first time in the country, a team of cardio-vascular surgeons performed ‘Z’-angioplasty on a 69-year-old Chandigarh resident who had undergone two bypass surgeries and had blockage in another artery.

He was operated upon with the help of a new technique and the blockage removed. Daljit Singh, a retired government official, had earlier undergone bypass surgery in 1988 at a Chennai hospital for triple vessel coronary artery disease. He underwent another bypass surgery in 1999 at a Delhi hospital for blocked bypass grafts.

"An angiography revealed critical narrowing of blood vessels (stenosis) in one of the coronary arteries. There were multiple acute sharp obstructive bends (angulations) through which negotiating coronary balloons and stents was almost impossible,” explained Dr HK Bali, interventional cardiologist, Fortis Hospital, Mohali.

Dr Bali and his team performed angioplasty and relieved the stenosis, thus restoring the blood flow to the vessel. “We used two medicated stents to treat the block. An innovative technique was used to treat this extremely complex disease,” said Dr Bali. The procedure, done under local anaesthesia, took 30 minutes, he said.

Post-bypass patients & recurrence of heart attack
10%-20% patients who have had a heart bypass operation require a second bypass procedure within 10 years, says interventional cardiologist HK Bali
This is so because the heart disease progresses with time, involving both native vessels and the vein grafts
As re-do surgery on these patients is a big risk, these patients till date were being managed on optimal medical therapy that lowers the quality of life considerably



UT Administration sends draft Master Plan to Centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Finally, the Chandigarh Administration today sent the draft Master Plan along with the minutes of the Administrator’s Advisory Council (AAC) meeting and the suggestions of the ‘Board of Inquiry and Hearing’ to the Central Government.

Now, the Centre will consider all these documents. Thereafter, the UT’s Master Plan will be notified. During the previous hearing at the Punjab and Haryana High Court, the counsel of the Union of India had informed the High Court that the Master Plan would be notified by October 30.

The UT’s draft Master Plan had recommended overall architectural and low-rise character of the city. The Master Plan committee had also turned down the demands of re-introduction of the Apartment Act, re- densification of government houses, extension of lal dora and increase in the floor area ratio in residential, commercial and educational institutes.

The work on preparation of the Master Plan started in 2008, but its progress had been marred by delays and the administration had to seek several extensions for its completion.

In the recent meeting of the AAC, local MP Kirron Kher had submitted many suggestions. Kher had demanded for implementation of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development (MSMED) Act, 2006, regularisation of construction outside lal dora in villages and setting up power generation plant in Chandigarh.

MP Kirron Kher had opposed Metro project

MP Kirron Kher had said in the AAC meeting that the Metro project in the city was not feasible.

Kher during the meeting, which was chaired by UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil, had submitted her viewpoint on the project. Kher had said though traffic congestion and parking problems need to be addressed, the proposal of a Metro project in a city like Chandigarh was not commercially feasible, since a minimum population of 2 to 4 million is required for the viability of Metro rail.



UT Master Plan
‘Include Kirron in approval committee’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Joint Action Committee of Industrialists and Traders writes to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to include local MP Kirron Kher in the approval committee of the Master Plan of the UT.

Besides Kher, members of the committee also demanded to include city Mayor Harphool Kalyan as a member in the committee.



Tributes paid to Major Sandeep Shankla
Tribune News Service

Maj Sandeep Shankla
Maj Sandeep Shankla

Panchkula, August 8
Armymen paid tributes to Major Sandeep Shankla at the Major Sandeep Shankla War Memorial in Sector 2, here, today.

Chief Signal Officer of the Western Command, Maj-Gen AR Prasad along with other armymen and Panchkula Deputy Commissioner SS Phulia was among the others who were present. The martyr’s parents, Col JS Kanwar (retd) and Manju Kanwar, paid floral tributes to him at the memorial.

Major Sandeep Shankla laid down his life for the nation in 1991 while fighting militants in Zafarkhani village in the Kashmir valley. The operation resulted in the death of three top militants. Four Armymen were also injured in the battle.

In recognition of the valour of the officer in the face of the grave personal risk, he was posthumously awarded the Ashoka Chakra.

Maj-Gen AR Prasad, Chief Signal Officer Western Command, laid the wreath on behalf of the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Headquarters Western Command. A number of serving officers, junior commissioned officers and veterans of the Dogra Regiment also laid wreaths during the ceremony.



Differently abled couple tie knot
Neha Mehta
Tribune News service

Chandigarh, August 8
“Marriages are made in heaven but celebrated on earth”. This phrase appropriately suits the deaf and dumb couple Meenu and Ankur who tied the knot at the Aasha Kiran Vocational Training Centre for Disabled, Sector 46, here, today.

It was a big day for them who took a vow while using sign language and got married here today.

Meenu came to Nari Niketan in 2009 and in the past five years she went to school, learned cookery and stitching. Ankur is working as a typist with a lawyer in Delhi. He told his parents that today his wish had come true.

Earlier, he told his parents that he wanted to marry a differently abled girl so that they could have a better understanding with each other.

Meenu has been promised by her in-laws that they would open a boutique for her because she was good at stitching.

UT Social Welfare Director Rajesh Jogpal said all units of the department participated in the wedding preparations till today and the staff made all arrangements on their own. No fund was taken from the government and everything was arranged through donations collected by units of the department for the marriage.



Duck, 11 ducklings escape from Butterfly Garden
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
A mother duck along with her 11 ducklings escaped from Butterfly Garden in Sector 26 to St John’s High School today.

The escape and chase episode of the duck along with her ducklings lasted over two hours. As the duck along with her tiny family covered a distance of over 200 m to make it to the school.

The incident was a nature treat for onlookers as the entire traffic in Sector 26 stopped to let the ducks pass by. The onlookers also clicked their photographs.

The ducks entered the school premises around 9.30am and they were spotted by the school guard.

The school authorities said over an hour span the ducks kept moving around in the school cricket ground and when students spotted them, the mother duck hid her ducklings in the cricket nets.

The students gathered in a large number to get a glimpse of the ducks.

After the school authorities informed the Wildlife Department, officials rushed to the spot to rescue them.

A four-member team reached the school. On seeing the team, the duck hid her ducklings behind the trees.

Wildlife rescuer Gaffar said, “After rescuing the duck flock, we dropped them in the Nepali forest since the mother duck had got really petrified here, so instead of putting her flock back in the Butterfly Garden we left them in the forest.”



TRAI Outreach Programme
Residents complain of erratic network
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
During a consumer outreach programme organised here by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), frequent call drops, erratic network turned out to be the most common complaint of residents.

“Reducing mobile towers in residential area has increased complaints of erratic network and call drops, said officials of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, while addressing the complaints.

The programme organised at the ITBP headquarters here saw residents from across the tricity sharing grievances against the telecom operators, both from the private and public sectors.

Principal adviser, TRAI, SK Gupta, and adviser, Robert Ravi, directed the representatives of respective companies to take down mobile numbers of the complainants and address their issues.



Ice-cream vendor found dead in P’kula

Panchkula, August 8
A 26-year-old ice-cream vendor was found dead at the railway track in Sector 19 here under mysterious circumstances late last night.

The victim, identified as Sampuran, a resident of Sector 19, was rushed to General Hospital, Sector 6, where he was declared brought dead.

Though the police said the vendor was crossing the railway track when the mishap occurred, the autopsy has not ruled out any foul play.

Forensic expert and head of the post-mortem department at the hospital, Dr Sunil Gambhir said: “There was a deep injury mark of some sharp-edged weapon on the deceased’s neck. It seems to be a case of murder.”

The victim hailed from Uttar Pradesh and was residing at Sector 19 at a rented accommodation.

“After we got a communication from the doctors conducting the post-mortem examination, we are investigating the matter,” a police official said.

It was after a passer-by noticed the body lying on the track, the police was informed about the incident. — TNS 



Power staff hold protest rally
Tribune News Service

Members of the UT Powermen Union hold a protest at Sector 17 in Chandigarh on Friday.
Members of the UT Powermen Union hold a protest at Sector 17 in Chandigarh on Friday. Tribune photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, August 8
The UT Powermen Union held a rally in support of their long-pending demands at Sector 17 here today.

The employees protested against the UT Administration for its proposal to ‘corporatise’ the Electricity Department.

The employees also protested against the adamant attitude of the administration towards their demands such as filling of over 650 vacant posts in the department, procurement of cables, joints, transformers, meters, tubes, fusewire and other urgent material needed by the department, offer appointment to the next of the kin of the diseased employees on the pattern of the Powercom, removal of pay anomalies and amendments in the rules.

UT Powermen Union general secretary Gopal Dutt Joshi said if their demands would remain unsolved then the agitation would be intensified in the coming days.



SOPU activists create ruckus in court
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 8
SOPU activists created a ruckus in the judicial court complex on the day of the hearing of the advocate Amarpreet Singh Sethi murder case here today.

Police personnel present at the spot failed to take any action and the activists fled the spot.

The SOPU activists raised slogans and there was tension in the court complex.

The murder case was to be heard in the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Tarsem Mangla.

Gaganjot Singh, a cousin of the deceased, who was injured during the firing incident last year, was to give evidence in the case.

Two of the accused in the case, Jaswinder Singh Mangli and Dharminder Singh, were not present during the hearing. The court fixed August 18 as the next date of hearing.

Reports said there was also a scuffle between two of the accused in the advocate murder case and a student leader, Lawerence Bishnoi, who had been brought from the Ropar Jail in a separate case for hearing in the court of Judicial Magistrate Aashish Saldi.

There is an alleged rivalry between Bishnoi and SOPU activists.

Manjeet Singh Sethi, uncle of the murdered advocate, alleged that a brother of one of the accused was a SOPU leader. He said last year SOPU activists, who were in a vehicle, had tried to run over police personnel.

Advocate Amarpreet Singh was shot down in an indiscrimante firing on February 27 last year in Phase III-A here. A quarrel between neighbours over vehicle parking took an ugly turn when certain youths living as paying guests opened fire, killing Amarpreet Singh and injuring two others, Gaganjot Singh and Simarjit Singh.

The case
Advocate Amarpreet Singh was shot down in an indiscrimante firing on February 27 last year in Phase III-A here. A quarrel between neighbours over vehicle parking took an ugly turn when certain youths living as paying guests opened fire, killing Amarpreet Singh and injuring two others, Gaganjot Singh and Simarjit Singh.



robbery incidents
Residents seek permission to keep firearms
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, August 8
Losing faith in the police, residents of different housing colonies and villages, have sought permission for keeping firearms to counter criminals.

Recent spate of robberies in Sanauli, Mullanpur and Chandigarh, allegedly committed by the Kala Kaccha gang and left a number of people injured last month, left the people terrified.

The police have asked the villagers to start holding community policing during night (thikri pehras).

In a recent incident in Preet Vihar, Zirakpur, where a vigilant resident Heena (18), a karate player, foiled robbery bids exposed the chinks in the security arrangements made by the police.

The residents have started keeping licensed fire arms, swords and sticks. Some of them even have installed CCTVs and electronic siren systems.

KK Kapoor, a resident of a housing society, claimed to have installed electronic alarm system to prevent entry of strangers.

He, however, lamented that the electronic devises are of no use due to the erratic power supply. Avtar Singh, a resident of Nagla village, said he had applied for an arms license so that he could use a firearm in case of any emergency.

After a robbery at a jewellery shop in MDC Panchkula, the district police had launched a drive for the police verification of tenants living in scores of apartments and houses in Zirakpur municipal area.

The drive was reportedly suspended after two days, sources in the police reveled.



UT SSP talks tough at meeting
Says if violence doesn’t stop, will recommend against holding elections
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Chandigarh Police have registered as many as nine cases against student parties of Panjab University before the announcement of student council elections this year.

If violence on and outside the campus continues at the same scale, the UT police will recommend the UT Administration not to hold the elections this year. This was stated by the UT Senior Superintendent of Police, Dr Sukhchain Singh, during a meeting with PU Vice-Chancellor Arun Kumar Grover and other varsity officials besides student leaders. The Deputy Superintendent of Police (Central), Ashish Kapoor, was also present at the meeting.

Pointing towards the rise in violence, the SSP said only seven such cases were registered on the campus throughout last year. This showed that student parties were not following rules, he said.

It was decided that the university authorities will closely monitor all student parties this month, following which a report on violations done by party leaders and workers will be prepared. The UT police, on the basis of this report, will then recommend whether the student council elections should be held.

Taking a serious note of defacement of public property in the city, Dr Sukhchain Singh told student leaders that the police were planning to register cases against those parties whose posters were pasted illegally in the city. He also directed the student leaders not to paste party stickers on their vehicles, as it violated traffic norms.

The police told student parties not to hold any car rallies on or outside the campus. In order to take out any procession in the city, they were told to seek permission from the Deputy Commissioner, and for on-campus activities from officials deployed for the purpose.

The parties were also asked not to bring outsiders for canvassing on the campus.

Show-cause notice served on SOPU

Dean, Students’ Welfare, Panjab University, Navdeep Goyal on Friday issued a show-cause notice to Students’ Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) for allegedly threatening the security personnel who stopped them from pasting posters on the campus.



PUSU gets a shot in the arm
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Giving a fillip to Panjab University Students’ Union (PUSU), eight activists of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) and five members of the Student Organisation of India (SOI) have joined the party ahead of the student council elections.

PUSU president Sehajpal Sidhu made this announcement on the campus here today.

The party also strongly objected to the presence of student council’s former president Chandan Rana in a meeting convened by the Dean, Students’ Welfare, to decide on rolling back the credit system.

Sidhu said the previous council’s tenure had expired long back.

“Inviting Rana to this confidential meeting exposes the biased attitude of the PU authorities,” he said.

NSUI questions lack of medical facilities

The National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) today submitted a memorandum to the Panjab University authorities raising concern over the functioning of the health centre on the campus.

The health centre caters to the needs of 7,000 hostellers and 6,000 residents of the university. The students said there was no doctor or physician available in the health centre after 6 pm.

Also, contact details of physicians had not been provided, the memorandum stated.

Calling the facilities insufficient, students said the health centre ran only one ambulance and only one staff member was deputed on the night duty.



Admission to Class XI
Third round of counselling from Aug 13
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The Education Department will conduct the third round of counselling for admission to Class XI in government schools from August 13.

Education Department officials said the candidates who had already taken admission to government schools and now wanted to change their school needed to submit ‘form for change of school/stream/option’. All such candidates would need to fill up a form titled ‘form for change of school/ stream/option’. The form would be available in the six designated schools - Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS) 10, GMSSS-28, GMSSS-37B, Government Girls Model Senior Secondary School (GGMSSS-20B), GMSSS-46, GMSSS-MHC, Mani Majra.

The officials said the forms would also be available on the Education Department’s website - www.chdeducation.gov.in. The forms can be submitted online and the print out of online filled up form is also to be submitted.

The officials said the candidates who applied for admission during the first or second round of counselling but did not take admission for any reason or were not allotted any seat would also have to submit/apply on form titled ‘form for change of school/stream/option’. The form could be submitted online and the print out of the online filled up form is also to be submitted.

The authorities said the candidates who did not apply for admission earlier could apply now by filling up the registration form available in the prospectus.

The list of vacant seats after the third round of counselling and subsequent vacancies (category wise/stream wise) will be displayed by all schools on Wednesday and Friday up to August 30. The list of selected candidates from the waiting list will also be displayed on Monday at 12 noon.

The schedule
Issue and submission of duly filled form for change of school/stream or registration form from August 13 to 14 from 9 AM to 1 PM.
Display of list indicating the allotment of school and stream on August 22 at 11 AM.
Deposit of fee/SLC in the school where the candidate has been allotted a seat from August 23 to 25 from 9 AM to 11 AM.



pu courses
Admission schedule out
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Panjab University has announced the admission schedule for various departments. The students aspiring to take admission in the MA music (instrumental) can apply by August 14. The aptitude test will be held at the Department of Music on August 19.

Interview for admission to the one-year LLM course will be held at the Department of Laws on August 11. The provisional merit list will be displayed on the department’s notice board on August 10. 



Worry, its cure discussed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Renowned scholar from the USA Dr Swaraj Singh delivered a lecture on “Worry and its cure through teachings of Guru Granth Sahib” at Panjab University, here today.

Dr Swaraj Singh said through ego, people could disassociate themselves from society and the cosmos, and therefore from the larger self, and develop a fear and sense of insecurity in their mind.

“Guru Granth Sahib teaches us to surrender the self to ‘hukam’, the universal order that is the reflection of the Almighty,” he said.



Social sciences need more funds: Thorat
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
Inadequate funding and lack of infrastructure in universities is a matter of concern for social sciences scholars, said ICSSR, New Delhi, chairman Prof Sukhadeo Thorat, during the first KC Shenmar Memorial Lecture at Panjab University today.

The University Grants Commission’s former chairman said the number of fellowships should be increased and adequate funds should be allocated for research work by the Centre to improve the quality that had declined in recent years.

Raising concern over the absence of funds with the universities for foreign collaborations, Prof Thorat said if the government wanted benefits of research to reach society, it had to revamp the system.

Speaking on “Socially Inclusive Growth: Theory and Indian Experience since 1990”, he called for an inclusive and pro-poor growth to help the deprived strata.

Prof Thorat said lack of access to resources led to discrimination against the schedules castes, schedules tribes and poorer sections of the Muslim community. PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Arun Kumar Grover presided over the event.



115 units of blood collected
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 8
The National Service Scheme (NSS) unit of Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, organised a blood donation camp in collaboration with Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32.

The chief guest, Director, Higher Education, Sandeep Hans, inaugurated the camp. He donated blood and inspired students to take part in the noble cause as well. In all, 115 units of blood were collected during the camp.



Chandigarh University inks pacts with six UK varsities

Mohali, August 8
Chandigarh University has signed MoUs with six universities in the UK under the CU International Student Exchange Programme.

The MoUs have been signed with Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, Middlesex University, London, University of Chester, Birmingham University, Cardiff Metropolitan University and Northumbria University, Newcastle.

Under this programme, students of both countries can share faculty and knowledge in various technology areas.

Under the MoUs, UK students of engineering, business management, hotel management, biotechnology, animation and pharma sciences can choose Chandigarh University for their internship and higher education.

Dr RS Bawa, Vice-Chancellor, CU, said the exchange programme would not only cover students but also research scholars and faculty. The faculty of Chandigarh University would get international research exposure through participation in international conferences. — OC



From Schools
Rakhi-making activity

Chandigarh: Tribune Model School organised the rakhi-making and thali-decoration activity for Kindergarten students on Friday. The students enthusiastically participated in the activity. Teachers explained the significance of the festival to the students.

Painting contest

Students take part in a painting competition at Bal Bhawan in Chandigarh on Friday.The SBI Inter-School Painting competition was organised at Bal Bhawan on Friday. Around 750 students from 57 schools of Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali showcased their painting skills. The competition was held in three different categories. The organisers said the selected best 60 painting would be exhibited on August 13 and 14 at the Art Gallery in Sector 10.
Students take part in a painting competition at Bal Bhawan in Chandigarh on Friday. A Tribune Photograph

Raksha Bandhan celebrated

Tiny-Tots’ Foundation School celebrated Raksha Bandhan on the school premises on Friday. Special assembly was held in the school. Students sang songs based on “Rakhi”. KG students made rakhis using clay. Flower rakhis were the main attraction of the event.

Students visit post office

Tiny tots of Strawberry Wonder Kids, Dhakoli, were taken to the post office. Sonia Pahwa, director, told the students about the significance of the post office. They were told about the importance of the Postal Department. The tiny tots posted first letter of their life wishing Happy Independence Day.

Vanmahotsav celebrated

Vanmahotsav was celebrated at Government Middle School, Sector 26, BDC Chandigarh. Satnarayan Sharma, member, Environment Society of India, and Naresh Kumar, area councillor, were among the chief guests. Students and teachers planted saplings.

Students honoured

Mohali: St Soldier School held its annual prize-distribution function here on Friday. The achievers from both the academic and co-curricular fields were honoured. Students of Class XII, who brought laurels to the institution by securing the highest aggregates, were also felicitated. The Best House Trophy was awarded to Sahibzada Jujhar Singh House.

Children have fun during a monsoon party at Doon International School in Mohali on Friday.Monsoon party

An artificial monsoon party was organised at Doon International School, Sector 69, here to give relief to students from the sultry weather and focus on the importance of the monsoon. The students enjoyed the party while holding umbrellas and also played various games. — TNS
Children have fun during a monsoon party at Doon International School in Mohali on Friday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu



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