C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PU wants student poll on Sept 5
Sends communication to Chandigarh Administration, UT police; awaits their nod
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Panjab University has decided to hold the elections to the Panjab University Campus Students Council (PUCSC) on September 5. The PU authorities will go ahead with the elections after getting the nod from the Chandigarh Administration.

A communication in this regard was sent today to the Chandigarh Administration and the UT Police.

Deputy Commissioner Mohammed Shayin confirmed that a communication had been received from the PU. “Our concerns are to check violence and defacement. We will hold the elections in consultation with the police,” he said.

PU officials said the elections to various student bodies in the PU-affiliated colleges in Chandigarh as well as in the Department of Evening Studies at the PU would also be conducted the same day, according to the proposal.

Highly placed sources in the Administration said during the past one week, a number of meetings were held between university and police officials to decide on the date of the elections.

Officials in the Administration said the process to approve the date had started and after a discussion with the police, the green light would be given to the university authorities to hold the elections.

In the past also, the student elections have been held in the first week of the September only. The date proposed by the university is usually approved by the Administration.

Proposed date for filing of nominations Aug 28

Sources said by next week, an announcement regarding the elections would be made after getting approval from the Administration. The proposed date for filing of nominations, scrutiny of documents, display of the list of candidates, filing of objections and the display of the list of approved candidates is August 28 while for withdrawal of candidature and display of the final list of candidates, the date is August 29.

16 parties in the race

There are 16 student parties in the race this year. Around 14,000 students are enrolled as voters with the university for these elections.

Defacement Act

The UT Administration had earlier made it clear that violation of the defacement Act and violence would not be tolerated during the elections. So far, 31 notices have been issued to student leaders by the university for violation of the Act.



Venom worth Rs 10 cr, two snakes seized
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
A team of the People for Animals (PFA), in association with the Chandigarh police, has recovered two sand boa snakes and 600 ml of snake venom from a private bus in Hallo Majra. The recovered snakes and venom were being smuggled out of India, the police said.

PFA officials said the value of the 600 ml snake venom was approximately Rs 10 crore in the local market and much higher in the international market. Snake venom is used by drug addicts and also in rave parties. The UT police had received information from the PFA that a foreigner was smuggling snakes and cobra venom. From Chandigarh, the venom was to be supplied out of India.

“On the tip-off, a naka was laid at the Hallo Majra light point and the police team stopped a private bus (PB 65 R 1917). During checking, the police team recovered an unclaimed brown bag. The snakes and venom were kept in a gift-wrapped box inside the bag, the police said.

Though no one was arrested, a case has been registered under the Wildlife Act. “We are trying to find the owner of the bag, who left it in the bus,” the police said. 



49 schools in P’kula dist without toilets
Bipin Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 20
One in every 10 schools in Panchkula district does not have toilets. And the existing ones are in bad shape as there is inadequate staff to maintain the toilets.

The ground reality is in contradiction to the report of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) on government schools without toilets. In the absence of toilets, students have no option but to go in the open. The worst affected are girls, some of whom prefer to miss their schools, resulting in an increase in the dropout rate among girl students.

A school in Haripur village, Sector 4, has just two toilets for 600 students in the primary and middle sections. Similarly, a makeshift toilet for boys has been provided at the primary school in Sector 19 to cater to a strength of 450 students. The school, however, has proper toilet for girls. The toilets in a majority of the schools are in bad shape in the absence of adequate water facility and sanitation. The toilets emanate foul smell, making it difficult for students to use these.

Sujata Rana, District Programme Coordinator, Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan, Panchkula, claims that the Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) prepares an annual report as per the requirements of the school authorities and sends it to the ministry.

The district has 425 government schools in four blocks — Barwala (78), Morni (88), Pinjore (193) and Raipur Rani (66) — of which 49 schools do not have toilets.

In Morni block, 11 schools do not have toilets for boys while seven schools lack the facility for girls.

Similarly, Barwala block has 78 schools of which six lack toilets for boys and five for girls. Of the 193 schools in Pinjore, 11 schools do not have the facility for boys and five for girls.

The UDISE, in its report for 2013, shows 11.53 per cent government schools without toilets in the district.

Enquiries revealed that a majority of the government schools are unable to maintain the toilets in the absence of permanent Class VI employees. Moreover, taps in a majority of the toilets are without water.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, a school Principal said two toilets (separate for girls and boys) were not sufficient in schools having a strength of 600 to 1,000 students.

“The department released Rs 7,500 each for the maintenance of schools annually, which is inadequate. The staff have been contributing money from their pockets to purchase phenyl and other disinfectants for toilets,” claimed another Principal of a high school on condition of anonymity.

Sources in the Education Department said according to the ministryy guidelines, the student-toilet ratio should be 40:1 (for girls) and 50:1 for boys. The ratio is not being maintained in the government schools.



Dhanwantary students’ protest hits patients hard
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Hundreds of patients who visited Shri Dhanwantary Ayurvedic Hospital and College, Sector 46, today faced inconvenience as students bolted the doors of the OPD from inside this morning.

Around 30 students of the 2012 batch were protesting against the college management for not pleading their case with Panjab University for holding their annual exams.

At around 7.30 am, 30 students entered the administrative block, OPD, ICU, emergency and chemist shop of the college and bolted the entire premises from inside. The authorities called up the police and following their intervention, the students vacated the ICU, emergency and chemist shop for patients. However, the OPD and reception, where on an average around 150 patients get enrolled every day, was not vacated by the protesters. Throughout the day, the students did not vacate the hospital and continued their protest, demanding that they be allowed to meet the management.

Finance secretary SK Aggarwal and Principal SK Thakur tried to convince the students to call off the protest, but they refused to budge.

Two protesters were deployed at the entry point of the OPD and were seen telling patients that the hospital was not functional today and that they had no idea when the issue would be resolved and the doctors would be able to attend to the patients.

The protesters complained that for the past two years, the PU and the college management had failed to resolve the issue of their annual exams. They said the college management had assured them on August 14 that it would resolve the issue in a day, but nothing had been done so far, forcing them to resort to agitation.

Issue not discussed at Syndicate meeting

At a recent Syndicate meeting, a representation of the college for the 2012-13 batch was tabled which stated that as the date sheet and the roll numbers were issued to the students, the exam should be held by the PU. However, the Syndics did not discuss the issue and kept it pending for the next meeting.

No fruitful results emerged from a four-hour meeting held between the management and students. Management secretary Naresh Mittal asked the students to call off the strike and assured them to take up the issue with the PU authorities. However, the students refused and continued their protest.



He battled skull deformity to become a doctor
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
While taking him to a doctor at the age of three, family members of 24-year-old Vivek Bansal, who had symptoms such as drowsy eyes, irritable nature and a slightly abnormal face, had never imagined that their little awareness would pay them so well in life ahead.

Vivek, who was born with craniosynostosis, a disorder that results in abnormal growth of the skull and facial features and psychological problems in the long run, underwent a surgery at the PGI, and has now become a doctor of dental sciences.

“Though Vivek’s parents were shattered when they learnt about the disorder, timely diagnosis changed his future. Such children, if not treated due to lack of awareness, face ridicule among the peer group and suffer mentally also,” said Dr RK Sharma, Head of the Department of Plastic Surgery, PGI, who pioneered the treatment for craniosynostosis in India and performed cranioplasty on Vivek in 1994.

“While I don’t recall the time when the surgery was performed since I was too young, as I grew up, I understood that I would have been an ailing and dependent person had my parents not made efforts to find the right treatment for me. I then decided to work hard and make my parents proud,” said Vivek, who is currently pursuing the MDS from the Genesis Institute of Dental Sciences in Ferozepur.

“When I went to the PGI for a follow-up about four years ago, I realised how many people with similar disorders keep suffering mentally and physically for several years in the absence of awareness on the correct diagnosis and treatment,” Vivek said.

About craniosynostosis

Persons suffering from craniosynostosis have premature fusion of one or more sutures of the skull that results in abnormal shape of the skull. The underlying brain cannot grow freely and this results in persistent headache, decreasing vision and bulging of the eyes. The abnormal tower shaped skull as seen in Vivek’s case is called turricephaly. It results in drowsy eyes, headaches and irritation and long-term mental health problems and impaired vision.


Dr Sharma and his team rearranged the various bones of the skull to increase its capacity and volume to allow normal growth of the brain by way of a complex surgery. The surgery costs Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh at the PGI and Rs 5 to Rs 10 lakh in private hospitals.

This type of specialised craniofacial surgery is being performed at the PGI regularly for the past 21 years and so far more than 100 craniosynostosis patients have been treated. Most of these patients have got integrated into society as useful members like Vivek, said Dr Sharma.

Timely diagnosis changed his future: Expert

Vivek was born with craniosynostosis, a disorder that results in abnormal growth of the skull and facial features and psychological problems in the long run. Though Vivek’s parents were shattered when they learnt about the disorder, timely diagnosis changed his future. Such children, if not treated due to lack of awareness, face ridicule among the peer group and suffer mentally also. — Dr RK Sharma, Head, Dept of Plastic Surgery, PGI 



Cyclist crushed to death under CTU bus near Rose Garden
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
A 22-year-old cyclist died while the pillion rider was critically injured when a speeding bus of the CTU hit them near Rose Garden on the road dividing Sectors 16 and 17 here this afternoon. The victim, Subhash Yadav, died on the spot while his cousin Rohit Yadav (24) is battling for life at the PGI. Both of them had come to the city two days ago from Pratapgarh in UP in search of a job.

The incident occurred at around 4 pm when the two were headed towards the Sector 9/10/16/17 roundabout on their bicycle. A CTU bus hit their cycle, following which Subhash fell on the road and his head was crushed under the left wheel of the bus.

The bicycle was also crushed in the mishap. The police rushed both the injured to the hospital where Subhash was declared brought dead and Rohit was referred to the PGI, where he is currently admitted.

Two of Subhash’s brothers work in the city. The driver of the CTU bus, Nirmal Singh, was arrested in a case of causing death due to negligence under Section 304 A of the IPC. The bus has been impounded.

A case has been registered at the Sector 17 police station.

Killer CTU buses

January 23, 2014: A 17-year-old girl, Rajni Yadav, died after being crushed under a

CTU bus at the ISBT- 17.

* May 9, 2013: Sharmila Gupta, a resident of Nayagaon, was killed when the Honda Activa scooter she was riding was hit by a CTU bus on the slip road on the Sector 10 side near Home Science College.

* July 2012: Schoolgirl Anupama was crushed under a CTU bus as she tried to board the bus in Sector 35. The bus ran over her leg and she succumbed to her injuries after a week at the PGI.



Hit by car, student dies
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, August 20
A 12-year-old student was killed after being hit by an Alto car near AAR Jain Model Senior Secondary School here today.

The deceased has been identified as Gourav, a resident of Dadpura Mohalla, Ward No. 13, Dera Bassi. Kewal Kumar, Gourav’s uncle, said the victim was on the way to school on his bicycle when the mishap occurred. He was stuck between the car and a streetlight poll on the road. He was taken to the local Civil Hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.

According to the police, the car driver has been identified as Himanshu, who is reportedly a minor. The police have registered a case against him and have impounded the car.


Five chemist shops raided
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Acting on a tip off that chemists in the city were not issuing bills, the UT Excise and Taxation Department today conducted surprise raids at five chemist shops in different parts of the city.

The shops raided were Kumar Brothers in Sector 11, Gupta Agencies Sector 24, Tirlok Chemists at the PGI, Shiv Medicos in GMCH, Sector 32, and another chemist shop in GMSH-16.

In the five-hour long raid, the taxation sleuths undertook stocktaking of the chemists. All the chemists had been asked to provide details of their sale proceeds.

The taxation officials also found that two chemists had set up godowns without getting the mandatory licence from the competent authority.

Excise and Taxation Commissioner Mohammed Shayin said the surprise check was conducted on the basis of information from the general public. It was also being verified whether the chemists were selling medicines marked as free samples.

“The exact evasion would be known once the entire record was scrutanised”, said the officials. The argument forwarded by the chemists was that due to the rush they could not issue bills on the spot.

The raids led to harassment among the patients at the PGI as they had to wait while the taxation officials were busy checking the records.



Psychiatrists in a fix over prescribing drug
Pvt psychiatry body requests DHS, Chandigarh, Punjab, to clarify rules
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
The Narcotics Control Bureau’s recent crackdown on supply of a schedule K drug by a city-based-psychiatrist, has left other doctors in a fix.

The doctor was arrested for prescribing buprenorphine to OPD patients against rules that stipulate only patients at a de-addiction centre should be prescribed the drug. The other psychiatrists in the city, however, have now raised concern that patients needing the drug are mostly OPD patients and do not always need admission.

The Indian Association of Private Psychiatry gave representations to the Director, Health Service (DHS), Chandigarh, Dr VK Gagneja and Punjab, Dr Karamjeet, seeking clarity on rules for prescribing the drug.

The doctors, on the basis of their clinical experiences, said that if prescriptions remained limited to de-addiction inmates, a majority of patients abstaining from drugs may not get access to the right treatment.

The prominent representatives included Dr Puneet Kathuria, president, Indian Association of Private Psychiatry local chapter. Dr Satyen Sharma, secretary, Dr Neeraj Loona, Dr Sachin Kaushik, Dr Simmi Waraich, Dr Singla and Dr Sukhtej.

On August 15, the Narcotics Control Bureau booked a city-based doctor under the NDPS Act for allegedly stocking buprenorphine tablets. 



UT getting excess supply of kerosene, says survey

Chandigarh, August 20
A four-month survey carried by the UT Department of Food and Supplies to check the exact consumption of subsidised kerosene in the city found an excess supply of 108 kilo litre by the Union Petroleum Ministry.

The UT Administration has now decided to write to the ministry for reducing the supply. The reduced supply will check misuse and also save Rs 36 lakh per month for the ministry.

Following directions from the Deputy Commissioner, M Shayin, the survey was carried out by the Joint Director Food and Supplies, Danish Ashraf, and his team across eight depots. While the quarterly supply, at present is 888 kilo litre, the survey found that the actual consumption, by nearly 45,000 to 50,000 beneficiaries was of 780 kilo litre, said Ashraf. The survey was carried out from April to July, this year. — TNS



City industrialists seek reduction in collector rates 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Industrialists and traders of the city today met officials of the Estate Office in connection with collector rates. They demanded the collector rates be reduced.

ADC TPS Phoolka, Assistant Estate Officer (AEO) Balbir Singh Dhol and other officials concerned of the Estate office, attended the meeting. Chander Verma, chairman Converted Plot Owners Association, Kamaljit Singh Panchhi, president, Property Federation Association and Vinod Mittal, president, Chamber of Chandigarh Industries, representing the traders and industrialists attended the meeting. At the meeting, industrialists and traders submitted that in the Industrial Area collector rates for converted plots were more than double than the prevailing rates in the market. The difference between the actual sale price and the registry price will create major problem with the Income Tax Department that will charge capital gain tax on the registry amount, which will run into crores of rupees. They also submitted that national and multi – national companies were selling the built up area for much lesser than the collector rates being fixed by the Administration.

They also submitted that showrooms in Sector 26 was available for Rs 20 to 22 crore and collector rate for the same was about Rs. 45 crore, in that case, both the seller and the buyer would have to pay stamp duty on higher price and seller had to shellout capital gain on the amount which he had actually not received.

Officials of the Estate Office assured that they would prepare their report on collector rates based upon the submissions made by the traders and industrialists. The Deputy Commissioner will take the final decision, the officials told them.



New CHB Chairman takes charge
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Bhupinder Singh Bhalla, a UT cadre officer, today took over as the new Chairman of Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB). He was earlier posted as the Administrator of Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli.

A 1990-batch officer, Bhalla arrived today and after meeting senior UT officials took over the charge in the evening.

In addition to the responsibility of the CHB, he has been given the charge of the Secretary, Science and Technology, Environment Forests, Food and Supplies.

VP Singh, Commssioner, MC, was holding the additional charge of the CHB Chairman after the transfer of Satya Gopal to Mizoram.

Besides, another UT cadre officer, Dr SB Deepak Kumar, a 2005-batch officer and a former District Collector in Puducherry, joined the Chandigarh Administration. He has not been allocated any charge so far. He is likely to be given an independent charge of a Secretary by tomorrow. 



Cops claim leads in Mohali robbery 

Mohali, August 20
The Mohali police claim to have got some leads on the robbery case in Phase VI, here, yesterday.

SSP Inder Mohan Singh Bhatti said today the police were working on the leads it had got so far and expected to solve the case soon. He said he could not share any information on the leads as it could hamper investigations. Three masked robbers looted about 410 gm of gold jewellery and Rs 10,000 at gunpoint from a house in Phase VI, here, yesterday afternoon.

Two women, Rajbala, and her daughter-in-law, Shikha, were at their house when the robbers struck. Rajbala’s husband, Dharam Pal, and her son, Puneet, were not at home at the time of the crime. Two robbers were carrying pistols while one was armed with a knife. They put a tape on Rajbala’s mouth and threatened both women. Meanwhile, Ram Kumar, whose parents were murdered in Phase IV on May 3, 2006, today demanded that the Phase VI robbery case be handed over to the CBI as he felt the state police “will not be able to nab the robbers”.Ram Kumar said there were certain similarities in the two cases. His family was also running a depot as in the case of the Phase VI family. — OC



Anti-defacement drive in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation today conducted an anti-defacement checking drive in various sectors, including Sectors 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14 and 15.

Dr Sarita Malik, Joint Commissioner, MC, was supervising the team during the drive.

Inspectors of the enforcement wing of the MC removed posters from walls in markets, electricity polls and roads in these sectors. Malik said action would be taken against defaulters and notices would be served to them in this regard tomorrow.



Licence of two firms suspended

Chandigarh, August 20
The Secretary, Market Committee, has suspended the licence of two firms owned by Dinesh Mahajan, chairman of the Market Committee, Chandigarh, in the Sector 26 fruit and vegetable market.

The licence has been suspended for six months on the basis of finding of a committee that was probing into the alleged evasion of market fee by the firms owned by the committee chairman.

The Secretary, Mohammed Shayin, confirmed suspension of the licence. Last year, Dinesh Mahajan had been removed from the post of the chairman, Market Committee, Chandigarh, before being reinstated on court orders.

On being contacted, Dinesh Mahajan, said he was not aware of any such orders Last year, a surprise inspection was carried at the shop of Mahajan by a team of the market committee. — TNS



RBI, industrialists organise coin mela 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
The Chandigarh Beopar Mandal (CBM), in association with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), today organised a coin-cum-currency exchange mela at the State Bank of India (SBI) main branch, Sector 17.

In today’s programme, new currency notes and coins worth Rs 43 lakh were distributed among more than 250 traders.

On the demand of traders, Satya Narayan, DGM, RBI, has agreed to hold another coin mela after two weeks at ICICI Bank, Mani Majra, to supply coins and currency notes to the traders of Mani Majra.

Charanjiv Singh, president, CBM, while hailing the initiative of the RBI and the SBI, also appealed to the traders to make use of the facility.

Diwakar Sahoonja, chief patron of the CBM, said the Centre must expedite the introduction of plastic currency so that currency notes did not get mutilated during circulation. 



Passengers halt express train
Object to non-functioning AC; allow it to leave after half an hour
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Around 20 passengers who boarded the AC coach of the Chandigarh-Amritsar Intercity Express this evening made the train halt near the Chandigarh railway station yard as its air-conditioning system was not working.

For about half an hour, the protesting passengers and did not allow the Amritsar-bound train to leave the railway station yard.

Upon inspecting the coach, the railway officials found that the generator car of the train number 12041 was not functional due to which the AC was not working in the coach.

The fans in the coach were not operating as well.

The train that leaves the Chandigarh railway station at 5.40 pm could only chug off at 6.10 pm.

Station Superintendent RK Dutta confirmed that there was a technical fault in the coach due to which all passengers were shifted to the second class coach. He said the fare of the AC coach will be refunded to all passengers inconvenienced due to the fault.



Residents object to cutting of trees at Dadu Majra dispensary 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Chaos prevailed at the civil dispensary in Dadu Majra after a contractor, while repairing a wall, cut down two trees on the premises at around 1 pm.

When the residents in the area objected, the contractor and workers tried to flee.

The residents shut the main gate of the dispensary and called the police. Two workers were nabbed by them.

The Dadu Majra Residents’ Welfare Association general secretary, Narinder Chaudhary, submitted a written complaint with the police, alleging illegal cutting of trees. “The contractor is illegally carrying out these activities. I tried to contact the Mayor but he did not answer my call. We then called the police and submitted a complaint,” said Chaudhary.

The dispensary officials said their jurisdiction was limited to medical facilities and they did not know whether permission was granted for cutting the trees.

Joint Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Rajiv Gupta, meanwhile, said: “We will look into the legal aspect and take action accordingly.”

Chaudhary also pointed out that the dispensary premises were being used for preparing paver blocks for installation on streets in Dadu Majra. He said it was occupying a lot of space meant for patients’ queues and parking of vehicles.



For 3 days, maggot-infested man lies neglected at GMCH
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
In yet another incident of official apathy towards abandoned ailing persons, a maggot-infested man kept lying neglected at the emergency unit of Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32.

While the man kept suffering, none at the 24-hour emergency unit attended to him. A social activist, who happened to visit the unit late this evening to see another patient, saw the abandoned man and contacted the GMCH Director-Principal, Dr Atul Sachdev.

The activist, Shashishankar Tewari, said: “While initially Dr Sachdev sounded reluctant, he called me back after an hour and told me that the hospital staff had cleaned and dressed the man’s maggot-infested head.”

Tewari said the whole episode reflected poorly on the working of the Medical Superintendent of the hospital.

“The emergency medical officer told me that in such cases, the hospital needs permission from the Magistrate concerned to help the persons. I fail to understand why they failed to contact the official in the past three days?” questioned Tewari.

When this correspondent visited the Emergency at around 9.45pm, there was no one available at the special help desk (May I Help You) set up for assisting patients. The patient was lying on a trolley in the corridor. He was in a semiconscious state and could not speak. Despite repeated attempts, Dr Sachdev did not respond.

Last week, Chandigarh Tribune had highlighted the apathy of the UT Administration towards such abandoned persons. In past one year, four such cases were reported in these columns. To date, the city does not have a common helpline or dedicated service for extending help to such ailing persons. 



Zirakpur JACC president ends fast
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, August 20
Vijay Dutta, the president of Joint Action Coordination Committee (JACC), Zirakpur, ended his fast-unto-death after four days here today.

The civic body’s executive officer, Parminder Singh Sarao, accepted his demands and requested him to end the agitation.

Residents of nine societies, including Jamuna Enclave, Panchsheel Enclave, Chandigarh Enclave, Alpine Residency, Lajpat Enclave, Amolak Enclave, Sarv Manglam, Silver City and Friends Enclave, had been protesting against the municipal council for not providing them with basic civic amenities for the past decade.

The EO assured Dutta that works would be completed by September 20. The work relating to sanitation in the housing societies would commence from tomorrow, a press note issued by the JACC stated. 



It’s triple joy and blessings for this NRI couple
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 20
Fortis Hospital today announced the birth of triplets, the first ever at the multispeciality hospital.

The mother, Pooja Lalseta, and her three sons, Ansh, Aryan and Rishaan, are doing well and in good health, said the hospital authorities.

A team of gynaecologists, anaesthetics, neonatologists and paramedical staff ensured special follow-up care for the babies born prematurely at 33 weeks.

The babies were born on July 21. At birth, Ansh weighed 2.16 kg, Aryan 1.65 kg and Rishaan only 1.17 kg. Today, they weigh 2.6 kg, 2.1 kg and 1.5 kg respectively.

Pooja said, “My husband, Rishit Lalseta, and I are based in Australia but currently working in Tanzania. When we came to know that we were going to have triplets, our doctor ruled out long-distance travel to Australia. We were asked to choose between South Africa, Nairobi and India. We chose the Mohali hospital due to its proximity to Patiala, where my parents reside.”

Interestingly, sisters pf both Pooja and Rishit have earlier given birth to twins.



Awareness rally, contests mark Akshay Urja Diwas celebrations
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 20
Various programmes, including an awareness rally, poster-making, collage-making, slogan-writing and advocacy on the maximum use of renewable energy, marked the “ARISE-2014” celebrations, which is observed as Akshay Urja Diwas (Renewable Energy Day), on the campus of Chandigarh University, Gharuan.

Experts deliberated on issues pertaining to the overdependence of developed and developing countries on the exhaustible sources of energy like coal, oil and natural gas. This had resulted in the depletion of resources while the total world production of energy from renewable resources, which were available in plenty, was only 19.8 per cent.

Energy production in India was no different from the rest of the world as production from renewable resources was only 15.7 per cent of the total power generation. India currently ranked sixth among the energy producer countries in terms of energy being produced from non-conventional resources.

A team consisting of Navjot, Rohit and Rupinder won the first prize in collage-making, while Gagan Sharma coined the best slogan on renewable energy. Rijual Sharma won the poster-making competition. The winners were given mementos and certificates of merit.



Mohali admn to weed out Congress grass
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 20
To get rid of Parthenium Hysterophorus, commonly called Congress grass, from residential areas and roadsides of Mohali district, a special campaign will be launched.

After the removal of this wild grass, saplings will be planted under the Green Mission initiated by the Punjab government.

Deputy Commissioner Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu has issued directions in this regard to executive engineers concerned and the District Development and Panchayat Officer.

In the letter, the Deputy Commissioner said the abundant growth of Congress grass on roadsides and vacant plots led to various health problems. Besides, chances of accidents increased due to the growth of this grass on the roadside, Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu stated.

The Deputy Commissioner said the target fixed for plantation of five lakh tree saplings should be completed during this season.

The Deputy Commissioner directed the District Development and Panchayat Officer to motivate village panchayats to plant more saplings so that a green and healthy environment could be maintained.



Business news

Integrated postpaid plan launched

Chandigarh Vodafone India has launched “Vodafone RED”, an all-in-one, integrated, worry-free service for postpaid retail and enterprise customers. With the increasing use of smart phones, mobile internet and apps, customer needs have also evolved rapidly. The new service caters to these existing and emerging needs of customers, supported with a best-in-class service experience.

Property show

IndiaProperty.com has announced the 43rd edition of its property show, Gruhapravesh. It will be held on August 23 and 24 at Himachal Bhawan, Sector 28. The event will showcase around 50 new projects of 20 top builders of the city.

Dealership relocated

Himalayan Harley-Davidson, Chandigarh, has relocated to Elante Mall in the Industrial Area. The dealership will now run from Shop No. 50, Courtyard.

Biz group enters healthcare sector

Noida-based Jaypee Group has announced its entry into the healthcare sector. It will be establishing a chain of hospitals in North India with an investment plan of more than Rs 2,000 crore in the next three to four years. The group intends to build 500-bed hospitals and a 250-bed hospital in North India. — TNS



PU elections
Parties raise issues concerning students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Keeping in view the student council elections, all major parties are busy these days in submitting memorandums on various issues to the Panjab University authorities.

The Indian National Students Organization (INSO) raised the issue of maintenance in various departments. In its memorandum, the INSO raised the issue of canteen, water cooler in the Community Education Department, improvement and cutting of wild grass in open spaces of the South Campus, repair of fans and tubelights in the UIET and allocation of parking space in various departments.

Five members of the SOI, another student party, sat on an indefinite hunger strike outside Kasturba Hostel.

They alleged that yesterday the Dean Student Welfare had assured them that all their demands would be fulfilled. But since no action had been taken yet this regard, they sat on the hunger strike.

“The authorities have fulfilled the demands related to the BDS and UIET departments. But, 18 demands related to girls’ hostels have not been entertained accurately,” said Vicky Middukhera, a senior party leader.

The demands raised by the party include reading room in girls’ hostels, gymnasium and coffee house at the backside of Kasturba Hostel, extending late entry timings, reducing late entry fine to Rs 100 and 24X7 power supply in hostels on the South Campus.

The National Students Organisation (NSO) members also sat on a hunger strike in front of the Vice-Chancellor’s office. They objected to the ‘unfair’ means adopted by the authorities for admitting students to the SS Bhatnagar University Institute of Chemical Engineering and Technology this year.



HPSU, NSUI announce their campus panels
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
The Himachal Pradesh Students’ Union (HPSU) today announced its campus panel for the upcoming student council elections.

The HPSU also announced the party panel - chairman Sahil Kharol, Department of Law; president Shubham Chandel, Department of UILS; vice-president Neha Mehta, Department of Masters of Library; general secretary Aman Negi; and joint secretary Kuldeep Kumar, Department of UICET.

The NSUI, another student party, also announced its campus panel in the presence of its workers today.

Bindu Grewal from the Public Administration Department was announced as the chairman and Manpreet Singh from the Police Administration Department was announced as the vice-president of the NSUI.

Among others, Namit Chhabra was announced as the general secretary from the UILS, Brahmjot was announced as general secretary from biophysics, Piyush Rana as general secretary from mathematics, Puneet Garg as general secretary from the UBS and Mohit as general secretary from the Botany Department. Aditya Seyal was given the post of BDS in charge in the South Campus.

Rishabh Meena, who was working as an active member of another party in the UIET, also joined the NSUI. Shravan Kumar and Sandeep Chaudhry from the UIET, who have been working for the welfare of students, are now in support of the NSUI and joined the party today.

The NSUI also announced Shivani Bisht and Gurleen as vice-presidents from the UILS and the Department of Anthropology, respectively.



Minor clash at Panjab varsity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh August 20
A clash occurred between members of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) and the Gandhi Group Student Union (GGSU) outside the Kasturba Gandhi Girls’ Hostel at Panjab University at 10:30 pm today.

Sources said there were heated arguments between the NSUI and the GGSU leaders. Later, NSUI workers damaged the vehicle of a GGSU worker.

The sources said NSUI party president Hardeep Lalli was present at the spot when the incident took place.

Chief Security Officer Jatinder Grover said the security staff informed him about the incident, but none of the student parties complained to the authorities or the police about the incident.

He said both students, who were involved in the scuffle, fled from the spot along with their vehicles. Later, the security staff called the police.



PU and College notes

Drive against drug abuse

The ABVP, Panjab University unit, organised a drive against drug abuse at the Student Centre. During the elections time, various student organisations offer drugs and alcohol to students. The ABVP requested the students to avoid these cheap acts. Talking to the media, Sukjot Sidhu, president of the ABVP, said various parties used to spread these drugs and spoil the health of students. This year, it’s our priority to make students aware of dirty tricks of various student parties. On this occasion, ABVP leaders released a poster against drug abuse.

Renewable Energy Day observed

“PRAKRITI”, the Environment Society of the Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11, Chandigarh, celebrated Rajiv Gandhi Akshay Urja Diwas (Renewable Energy Day) in the college on Wednesday. An inter-college slogan writing competition on the theme “Energy Conservation” was held. Achila Dogra, principal of the college, was the chief guest. A lecture on energy conservation was also delivered.

Mehandi competition

In an attempt to recognise and nurture the budding talent at the MCM DAV College for Women, Chandigarh, the Department of Cosmetology and Beauty Care organised a mehandi competition. Students etched some magnificent mehendi designs on the theme “Traditional Mehandi”. Applauding the endeavour, Dr P Bedi, principal of MCM, said the college would continue to nurture the creative talent as much as the academic acumen of its students. — TNS



From schools

Special assembly

Chandigarh: The Mathematics Department of Tribune Model School organised a special assembly highlighting the importance of mathematics in day-to-day life. Students emphasised on the value of focus to succeed. The theme of the assembly was to master the coordination of head and heart.

Students bring laurels

Students of Gurukul Global School - Kuwar Jain (Class V - Yellow) and Ekagra Kaushal (Class IV - Red) bagged the first prize in the 11th National Soroban & Anzan Competition - 2014 held at St Bede’s, Shimla, on August 17. It was organised by the Semas Academy and PAMA-India.

Student nominated for award

Sayansh Jindal, a student of Class X of St John’s High School, Sector 26, has been nominated for the INSPIRE Award instituted by the Government of India, Ministry of Science and Technology (Department of Science and Technology), INSPIRE Award Division. Sayansh was also felicitated by the State Council of Educational Research and Training, UT, for his research-based project on agriculture. He was awarded a cash prize of Rs 5,000 and has qualified for the district-level exhibition.

Street play

Volunteers of the Saupin’s Community Service Organisation organised a street play in the Sector 35 market. The play laid stress on the national integrity and unity.

Janmashtami celebrated

Mohali: Students of Tiny-Tots’ Foundation School celebrated Janmashtami on the school premises. The students were dressed in the attires of Radha, Lord Krishna, Bal Gopal, Gwalbal, Gopi and Meera. The students offered prayers to the Lord Krishna. Teachers and students sang devotional songs.

Dahi-handi celebrations

ACNP Senior Secondary School, Zirakpur, celebrated Janmashtami with fervour. Kindergarten students, who were dressed in the attires of Krishna and Radha, showcases dancing skills. Senior students participated in dahi-handi celebrations.

Bhajans recited

Janmashtami was celebrated at Blue Bird High School. The programme began with the recital of bhajans. Students of Green House presented a dance depicting a scene from the Lord Krishna’s life.

Lord Krishna’s cradle decorated

The pre-primary wing of Saupin’s School, Sector 70, celebrated Janmashtami with zeal and enthusiasm. Students came dressed up as Radha and Krishna. The cradle of Lord Krishna was decorated with flowers.

Devotional renditions

Ashmah International School celebrated Janmashtami. The school premises was decked up with flowers and balloons. The celebrations began with devotional renditions by students.

Two-day carnival

Two-day joyous carnival “Xpressions’ 14” was held at Manav Mangal Smart School. The carnival comprised a gamut of activities such as fun games and a street play.

School felicitated

Panchkula: Doon International School was felicitated by the Minister of Human Resource Development, Smriti Irani, for the promotion of Sanskrit at a recently concluded award ceremony organised by the CBSE in New Delhi. Students of the school also participated in the Sanskrit Shloka Antyakshari Competition under the national-level Sanskrit week celebration organised by the CBSE. The group came second and was conferred with the national-level Sanskrit Week Honour - 2014 by the HRD Minister.

Elocution competition

Expressions 2014, an inter-class and inter-house elocution competition, was held at the junior wing of St Xavier’s High School. Students from Pre-Nursery to Class III participated in the competition. The students recited poems with a lot of enthusiasm and voice modulation. The contest aimed at enhancing the recitation and oratory skill of students. — TNS



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