C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PU elections
Panjab University decides today
14,323 voters to seal the fate of 20 candidates in the fray 
Tight security arrangements in place

Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
Panjab University is all set to go to the polls tomorrow. As many as 14,323 voters will decide the fate of 20 candidates of five student parties who are in the fray for the elections to the Panjab University Campus Students Council (PUCSC). A total of 184 polling stations have been set up in 64 departments for the smooth conduct of the elections.

The university authorities and the police were seen making last-minute efforts to prevent any violence while student parties left no stone unturned to seek support from voters on the last day of canvassing. As the percentage of women voters on the campus is around 65, the parties were seen trying to woo them in hostels, departments and at eateries.

Workers of parties had formed groups and were on their toes for the whole day moving around for a one-to-one interaction in classrooms, canteen and hostels, and holding rallies. They were also active on the social media, seeking votes for their candidates. The student parties deployed a large number of their supporters in departments where they had a strong hold to reassure their voters. Duties were assigned to the supporters to send messages on WhatsApp or on web pages to the voters. After every two hours, the student parties changed photos of their supporters on the web page as a show of strength. Punjab University Student's Union (PUSU) and the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) held foot rallies in the north and south campus, respectively.

The scene at the co-educational colleges in the city was also similar. While candidates were not allowed to move around in bigger groups or hold rallies, they visited voters in canteens and corridors. Last-minute alliances were formed at DAV College, Sector 10. Excitement could be seen among students at SGGS Khalsa College, where for the first time, a female candidate is contesting for the post of president.

900 policemen deployed

As many as 900 policemen have been deployed at the university and colleges for the student council elections, scheduled for tomorrow. Patrolling has already begun on the campus to maintain law and order and five PCR vans have been deployed there. Three DSPs have been deputed on the campus. Besides, all colleges will have one DSP each.

Apart from this, sensitive areas, including the UIET, SD College, Sector 32, DAV College, Sector 10 and Khalsa College, Sector 26, will be barricaded. A riot control vehicle will also be deployed on the campus to deal with any untoward incident.

What the fight is all about

PU voters will decide the fate of candidates for the following posts:




Joint secretary

What voters need to carry with them

To cast their votes, students will have to carry their identity cards issued by the department or a recent fee slip.

Polling begins at 9.45 am

The polling will start at 9.45 am. Voters will not be allowed to enter the polling station after 10.15 am

Expenditure by parties

NSUI Rs 16,680

SOI Rs 16,380

PUSU Rs 15,960

ABVP Rs 9,980

SFS Rs 740

What the DSW says

DSW Navdeep Goyal said student parties had been told that during the polling or during counting, if any complaint was received from a candidate, the counting of votes would be stopped till the issue was resolved. 

184 polling booths set up in 64 departments

Highest number of polling booths: 27 (UIET)

Number of voters: 14,323

Number of candidates in fray: 20 



Woman shot at by councillor’s brother
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 4
A woman, who was in the news recently for levelling molestation charges against local councillor Ravi Kant Swami, was allegedly shot at by Swami’s brother Ajay Swami (32) in front of Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Sector 3 here late last night.

The victim, Shivani, was rushed to the General Hospital, Sector 6, from where she was referred to the PGI, Chandigarh, as her condition was critical. Shivani, a resident of Sector 19, suffered a gunshot on her shoulder. Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Adarshdeep Singh said they were investigating the case. “The woman said something before falling unconscious at the General Hospital. We are trying to verify it. Our investigating officer had also gone to the PGI to record her written statement.”

According to the statement given by the victim, Ajay came in a white Swift car while she was walking towards her house. Quoting the victim, a police officer said Ajay shot at her and fled. Passersby rushed her to the hospital.

The police said the victim had come from Panipat by bus and had just alighted and was walking on the road separating Sectors 3 and 21 when the incident took place. Her husband works at Kaithal and had come home a few days ago.

On April 26 this year, the victim had accused Ravi Kant Swami of molestation. However, the matter was resolved after a huge drama was created by residents of Swami’s area who gheraoed the police post. Swami had also apologised to settle the issue.

Molestation charges

The victim was in the news recently for levelling molestation charges against Panchkula councillor Ravi Kant Swami.

What the councillor says

Ravi Kant Swami alleged that the woman was trying to frame them in the case due to old enmity. “I was in Rajasthan and I have a toll tax receipt with me. I came back at 4.30 this morning after having learnt about the incident. My brother was at home; the phone locations can be checked. He doesn’t possess any arms,” said Swami.

Was Swami’s car in Rajasthan?

The Panchkula police are verifying the statement of the victim as Ravi Kant Swami has claimed that he was in Rajasthan and the car was with him. He said he had given a toll tax receipt to the police, which clearly proved that the car was in Rajasthan.

Police looking into call details

The police are looking into Ajay Swami's call details. The last call that was made from his phone was at 8 pm.

Victim claimed she was a constable

The victim had earlier told the police that she was posted as a constable in Kurukshetra. However, police investigation revealed that no such constable was posted there.



Day after SHO’s arrest in bribe case, more skeletons tumble out
CBI says he may be involved in purchase of illegal properties worth Rs 85 lakh
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
A day after the arrest of the SHO of the Sector 34 police station, Inspector Rajesh Shukla, in a bribe case, more skeletons are tumbling out during the CBI investigations into the case. The CBI today said it had stumbled upon evidence that might lead them to establish the involvement of the Inspector in the purchase of illegal properties worth around Rs 85 lakh during his tenure. The CBI had seized some property documents following the raid at the Inspector’s residence yesterday. Besides, the CBI is also investigating if the SHO collected monthly bribe from various other quarters such as liquor contractors and owners of shops in the area as well as parking contractors.

While seeking a four-day remand for all three accused in the case, the CBI said it also needed to find out the names of the police officers who were to get a share of the bribe. “We are investigating who all gave the SHO monthly collections in the form of a bribe. Investigations also reveal that the Inspector had invested a lot of money in properties illegally,” a CBI officer said.

“The bribe amount that was collected was to be shared among other officers whose names have not been disclosed. Rajesh Shukla's voice sample has been taken while the voice samples of the other two accused are yet to be taken; thus the application for the remand is allowed,” said the court while sending the accused to two-day custody. The court also directed the CBI to place on record the recorded conversation prepared during the proceedings.

“Accused constable Dilbaj Singh and head constable Mukesh Kumar used to collect the bribe from various contractors and shop owners of other sectors under the jurisdiction of Sector 34 police station on the direction of Inspector Rajesh Shukla,” said the CBI.

The application for the remand was strongly opposed by the defence counsel, who stated that the voice recordings might have been tampered with. However, the CBI stated that the voice samples had been sealed. The CBI had recorded the conversation of the parking contractor (the complainant) with the constable who is heard demanding the money and saying that it will be given to the SHO.

Yesterday, the CBI had arrested Inspector Rajesh Shukla, SHO of the Sector 34 police station, along with head constable Mukesh Kumar and constable Dilbaj Singh in a case of bribe of Rs 10,000.

Accused cops suspended

Inspector Rajesh Shukla, head constable Mukesh Kumar and constable Dilbaj were suspended today. They have been transferred to the Police Lines and departmental proceedings have been initiated against them. Inspector Maninder Singh has been given the charge of the SHO of the Sector 34 police station.

SHO threatened me, says complainant

According to the CBI FIR, it has been alleged by the parking contractor that he was taken to the Sector 34 police station on August 29 where the SHO levelled allegations against him that he consumed liquor in the parking area of Sector 34 and created a nuisance for the public. He got his medical examination conducted at the GMCH-32. He then threatened him that he will have to pay money and Rajesh Shukla forcibly took Rs 10,000 from him on that day. However, no trace of liquor was found during his medical examination. Constable Dilbaj and head constable Mukesh Kumar contacted him over the phone and reiterated the Shukla's demand for a bribe of Rs 10,000. It was then that he complained to the CBI.

The CBI said there were recordings of conversations between the complainant and the accused held during the "verification, pre-trap and post-trap proceedings".

Jampacked courtroom

The accused Inspector was produced in a jampacked court. A large number of police officers had come to the court to express their solidarity with their colleague.


Water samples test negative for diarrhoea in Panchkula
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 4
The water samples taken from Sector 19, area where diarrhoea broke out, have turned out to be negative. The samples procured by the Health Department were of August 29, 30 and 31 while reports of samples taken on September 1 are awaited.

Chief Medical Officer Dr VK Bansal said, “The samples have come out clean indicating that the water that was being supplied by Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) was not contaminated.”

Meanwhile, a team of doctors from PGI, Chandigarh, visited Sector 19 and took water samples.

An elderly woman died while over 600 people landed in hospital after diaorrhea broke out in the sector.

HUDA claimed that the supply was going to five sectors and had there been a fault with their supply, diarrhoea would have spread in those sectors as well.

“In fact, those sectors have dairies and unhygienic conditions prevail,” said Superintending Engineer (SE) of public health wing with HUDA, NK Verma.

Though the District Administration claims that the situation is under control however, the exact cause has not been ascertained leaving people a harassed lot. They are still surviving on mineral water.

Even the local politicians, especially those in the fray for fighting Vidhan Sabha elections, have neither shown any concern nor have provided any facility to the residents. 



LIC donates wheelchairs 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
On the occasion of the 58th anniversary of the LIC and insurance week celebrations, the LIC Chandigarh Division donated 20 wheelchairs to the Post Graduate Institute of Medicine and Educational Research (PGI), Chandigarh, during a function held on the premises of the PGI.

The senior divisional manager, LIC Chandigarh Division, Subhash Chander, Jogender Kumar, marketing manager and BS Thakur, manager (Sales) handed over the wheelchairs to Dr Anil Kumar Gupta, Medical Superintendent, PGI, in the presence of Dr Mahesh Devnani, assistant professor, PGI, and other officials from the LIC in the Nehru Hospital.



College Poll buzz
All set for battle of the ballot today
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
Even as the authorities barred students from canvassing a day ahead of the student council elections, student leaders left no stone unturned to make their presence felt. While show of strength was on in full swing at city colleges, student leaders were seen reaching out to voters in canteen and corridors informing them about poll timings and the candidates in the fray.

In a strange turn of events at DAV College, Sector 10, one of the five presidential candidates, who was representing the Hindustan Student Association (HSA), withdrew admission citing personal reasons. The party first forged an alliance with the NSUI and the ISA and then backtracked. However, in the evening, the two sides announced their alliance and changed the presidential candidate.

Meanwhile, the students in Guru Gobind Singh Khalsa College, Sector 26, celebrated the emergence of a female face for the post of presidential post for the first time. Ramandeep Kaur, a student of MSc, is the first-ever female presidential candidate in the city colleges.

Election scene dull in women colleges

As none of the candidates in women colleges had affiliation with any of the student unions and most of the presidential candidates won unopposed, there was not much excitement about elections on the premises of the colleges.

Admission withdrawn

At DAV College, Sector 10, Janvir Singh, the presidential candidate of the Hindustan Student Association, withdrew admission citing personal reasons. Following this, the ISA and NSUI extended support to the party. Later, the alliance announced Sanjeev as its candidate for the post of president.



This PU poll may create history 
All eyes are on Panjab University as students decide the fate of the candidates contesting the varsity student council poll today
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
Similar to the 2013 Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUCSC) elections — that witnessed a student outfit of a national party creating history by winning the elections for the first time — the 2014 elections is going to create another history.

There is a probability of either the Student Organisation of India (SOI), a student outfit of SAD, winning its first-ever election on the presidential post on the PU campus or the National Students Union of India (NSUI) emerging victorious for the second time in a row.

The NSUI, which made the PUSU and SOPU bite the dust during the last elections, has turned out to be a key contender for the presidential post, this year, too.

The presence of Brinder Dhillon, who is known for his brand building and winning strategies, makes the NSUI stand out among rival leaders. Being backed by the HIMSU, an organisation comprising students from Himachal Pradesh, has boosted the NSUI’s confidence.

SOI, which has not been able to make its presence felt for the past eight years on the PU campus, has for the first time emerged as a strong contender for the presidential post.

SOI, which has its roots in Punjab, got a shot in the arm after former SOPU leaders — Vikramjit Singh Medukhera and Robin Brar — along with PUSU leaders Simranjit Singh Dhillon and Yadwinder Dhaliwal decided to join the SOI.

SOI’s alliance with SOPU, INSO and YUVA has further strengthened the outfit.

Political analysts believe that the two parties are going to have a nail-biting contest.

SOI leader Vikramjit Singh Medukhera said the party’s alliance with different student organisations would pull a good show for them.

On the other hand, NSUI leader Brinder Dhillon was confident about the party’s win. “Due to promises fulfilled by the party, students trust us.”

The close fight for the presidential post has made one thing clear, the margin of votes between the winner and runners-up is going to be less as compared to the previous years. 

High hopes

NSUI: If the NSUI wins the presidential post, it will be for the first time that a youth wing of the national party will win PU elections, two times in a row. SOI winning the presidential post will also create history as it is for the first time that a party candidate will win the post.

PUSU: The party has cadre votes on the PU campus. It can also turn the tables by putting up a brilliant show. 



Making jibes at others to earn brownie points
Parties use illustrations to malign image of other bodies
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
All is fair in love and student poll. The last day of canvassing for the student council elections saw the student bodies using the phrase to their advantage.
These cartoons have been distributed among students.
These cartoons have been distributed among students.

Leaving no stone unturned to malign their rivals, the student bodies widely circulated cartoons, poking at the unfair means being used by the other parties.

Right from projecting the rampant use of money, liquor, muscle power and weapons, the cartoons project their rivals as the worst party to be elected.

Throughout the day, activists of various student parties were spotted holding a bunch of papers with illustrations and distributing the same among students.

Illustrations of party leaders pointing guns at each other, brandishing weapons and forcing the students to cast vote have been circulating in hostels and classrooms.

‘Yeh party wale to gundey hae bhag kar he jaan bachane padege’, ‘Hum logo ko dararkar and peetkar vote lae lenge’, ‘Hum zyada darayenge and jeet jayenge’ are few of the slogans written on the illustrations.

SOI leader Vikramjit Singh Medukhera said, “This cheap politics is being played by the rival parties who don’t have any promises to make to the students.”

Echoing a similar view, PUSU leaders stated, “A party that lacks confidence can only behave this way. This shows it does not have any other issue than defaming other parties by making such defaming illustrations.”

Sources said more than 15,000 copies of such illustrations have been distributed around both the north and south campus of the university.

Interestingly, the PU authorities once again failed to keep a check on the politics being played by the student bodies. 



Poll raises students’ expectations
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
The ongoing activity of the student parties at Panjab University has not only raised the expectations of students but is also becoming a cause of worry due to the interference of political parties on the campus. The PU students give their take on the issue.

The campus needs to be in safe hands. The interference of political parties can prove good for the campus but they should play it clean. But the present scenario is proving that the campus politics is going to be worst.

Suchila Sachar

The interference of political parties is as good as having a naked sword. It’s good to show but tough to handle. Leaders on the campus should ensure that they are not made scapegoats. They should work for the welfare of the campus.

Guryog Kaur

It’s good that political parties are taking keen interest in PU poll but the leaders should not make it a platform to increase their status. They should carry out welfare work and work towards no-violence and welfare of students.

Gaurav Bedi

Every coin has two sides. The leaders should take the initiative and make sure they do work in the interest of the students. Their preference should not be to entertain political parties but to encourage campus as the best institution of the world.

Amarjeet Singh



Revelling in booze, parties late at night
Tribune News Service

Clockwise from top left: Chaos rules the roads on the campus; hostel inmates return from parties held by student groups; students raise slogans in favour of their party in Sector 25; and Jatinder Grover, in charge of varsity security and Navdeep Goyal, DSW, inspect a vehicle outside Hostel No. 2 at Panjab University on Thursday. Tribune Photos: Pradeep Tewari.

Chandigarh, September 4
It was party time, particularly for hostel inmates, at Panjab University as all the student parties wooed their voters by holding parties at various hotels and bars of the city till late night.

Sources in the university revealed that during checking of vehicles by the PU security staff near Hostel Numbers 1 and 2, eight bottles were found in a crate.

Feasting time

They said the Students Organisation of India (SOI), threw a party at a hotel in Sector 35, while the National Students Union of India (NSUI), held a party in Barbeque Nation and Nando’s at Elante Mall. Both the parties also provided pickup and drop facility to the girls residing in the hostels.

While the police and the PU security staff were on their toes till late night to manage the supporters of parties, who allegedly tried to hold a rally on the campus.

NSUI takes out rally

At the girls Hostel No.8, the NSUI held a rally of as many as 200 supporters around 9 pm. The police had a tough time while trying to send all the hostel inmates inside the premises.

Near Hostel No. 6, an unidentified person snatched stickers from the NSUI workers and ran away.

Sources said all student parties had decided to deploy their girl activists to distribute party pamphlets at 7:30 tomorrow morning.

Meanwhile, students are eagerly anticipating who will win the election.

Other contenders

Vice president

Manpreet Kaur ABVP

Ramandeep Kaur Sivia SOI

Snigdha Bawa NSUI

Sunimrat Kaur PUSU


Ankur Sehrawat NSUI

Divjyot Sandhu SOPU

Neeraj Kharb PUSU

Sheenu Bala ABVP

Somnath Thakur SOI

Joint secretary

Abhishek Thakur PUSU

Ankur Kumar SOI

Keshav Deep Singh ABVP

Pooja Sharma HPSU

Sachin Kanwar NSUI 

Rain may play spoilsport

The Met Department has forecast a cloudy sky with a possibility of rain, which may have a bearing on the PU elections. 

Gate timings changed

The PU has changed the timings of closing and opening of the university gates. Gate No. 1 (facing the PGI) will remain closed from 11 am till 4.30 pm on Friday for entry. While the vehicles will be allowed to go outside till 12:30 pm.  

Gate No. 2 and 3 will remain open as per earlier schedule. No change has been made. The changes have been made to avoid any untoward incident on the campus.



How much the student parties have shelled out
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
The two major student parties — the National Students Union of India (NSUI) and the Students Organisation of India (SOI) — which are giving a tough competition to each other in the Panjab University Campus Students’ Council (PUCSC) elections, also have a close margin when it comes to expenditure in the elections.

As per records of the observers, the NSUI is leading with Rs 16,680 as expenditure in the poll, while the SOI has incurred Rs 16,380.

Though the NSUI leads in expenditure, the SOI had better arrangements for its supporters such as setting up tents or stationery during the election.

As per the observers, the SOI set up an expensive tent for four days which cost them Rs 7,080, while they spent Rs 7,000 on stationery. On the other hand, PUSU stood second and it spent Rs 7,160 on tent and Rs 7,000 on stationery.

The NSUI is third as the party has spent Rs 6,880 on tent and Rs 7,000 on stationery.

This time, the parties also spent on the purchase of balloons with the NSUI spending Rs 580, while the SOI and PUSU shelling out Rs 500 each.

The Chief Election Observer Angrish Yograj said, “We will monitor the activities of parties till night and their expenditure will be included in their election expenses. If the amount of any candidate exceeds the limit — Rs 20,000 for panels and Rs 5,000 for individual candidate — his or her candidature will be cancelled.”



Lectures given a miss by faculty, students

Chandigarh, September 4
On the eve of student council elections, lectures took a back seat not only for students but also for the faculty members in city colleges. They were busy with responsibilities of scrutinising records, preparing final list of contestants, sealing ballot papers and keeping tab on violations.

At DAV College, almost all lecturers were involved in a variety of election-related duties. At Government College-46, the faculty members were busy checking arrangements at 10 polling stations. “We have created more polling stations this time and deputed three faculty members at each polling station so that students do not complain of bogus voting,” said the election coordinator of the college. — TNS



Protesting teachers find their day meaningless
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 4
“For us, Teacher’s Day has no meaning. We will continue with our fight for justice,” said representatives of various teachers’ bodies, staging protest in the town.

Rajdeep Singh Mansa of the Computer Masters’ Union said on the one hand, the central and the state government would honour various teachers on the Teacher’s Day while on the other, some would be agitating on roads for justice.

Since four days, the union members have been sitting on dharna in front of the office of the Director General School Education (DGSE), Punjab, in Phase VIII.

Members of the ETT Teachers’ Union, Punjab, who have been sitting on a dharna at the same venue, said tomorrow would be another day for them. “We are forced to leave our families to continue our protest. It is pity that teachers have to sit on roads on their day,” the protesters said.



Class VIII student bashed up by seniors
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 4
A student of Class VIII of Government Model High School (GMHS), Sector 38-D was allegedly bashed up by his seniors of Class IX yesterday.

The matter came to light when Usha Sidhu, the mother of the victim, Nikhil, approached the school authorities regarding the matter today.

Sidhu alleged that her son was allegedly bashed up by his seniors, which resulted in the head injury.

She said: “My son was beaten up by nearly 15 students of Class IX during the school hours on the school premises. However, the class teacher failed to take any action against the accused.”

The victim’s mother alleged that when she met the school authorities they also failed to act.

Repeated attempts to contact the school Principal failed as he remained uncommunicative.



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