C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


School bus travel to cost more
UT Transport Department increases special road tax by up to seven times
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
Travelling by school buses in the city is set to become costlier. After a gap of two years, the UT Transport Department has increased the special road tax (SRT) levied on school buses by up to seven times. The new taxes will applicable from September 22.

The decision will have a direct bearing on the budget of parents who send their children to school by buses. “Against Rs 900 to Rs 1,000 charged as school bus fee, the parents may now have have shell out around Rs 100 more,” pointed out a school bus operator.

Officials in the department said keeping in mind “the public convenience”, the new taxes had not been made applicable with immediate effect though the notification regarding the revised road taxes had been issued on September 9.

Under the revised rates, the operator of a 52-seater school bus, who was earlier paying Rs 4,200 per annum, will now have to pay an yearly tax of around Rs 32,000 as it has now been fixed at Rs 600 per seat per annum for all types of buses having more than 13 seats.

Besides the revision in the special road tax for school buses, the department has also increased the road tax applicable at the time of registration of new commercial vehicles. Against the system of charging Rs 100 per seat per annum, the road tax of taxis has been made one time and has been fixed at 6 per cent of the cost of the vehicle.

Similarly, the tax on three-wheelers has been increased from the yearly Rs 534 to a one-time fixed payment of 6 per cent of the cost of the vehicle. The tax for other category of commercial vehicles has also been revised.

No change in road tax for non-commercial vehicles

Though the Transport Department has not increased the one-time registration fee for non-commercial vehicles, revised only last year, the fee for the transfer of vehicles from other states and for the transfer of ownership of vehicles within the UT has been increased. For transferring a four-wheeler within the UT, the buyer will have to pay Rs 3,000 against the previous fee of Rs 300. And for a two-wheeler, the fee has been increased from Rs 230 to Rs 250.

‘A rude shock’

Manjeet Singh, president of the School Bus Operators Association, said the hike had come as a rude shock for them.



Civic body plans to introduce sanitation charges for shops
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
The Municipal Corporation may soon impose sanitation charges on commercial establishments across the city by introducing a garbage collection system for shops and booths in city markets.

A few years ago, the MC had introduced the system in Sector 22 as a pilot project. Under it, its employees collect garbage from all commercial establishments against which the traders pay sanitation charges.

At present, the MC is charging Rs 30 from booths and Rs 40 from SCOs in Sector 22 as sanitation charges.

MC Joint Commissioner Rajiv Gupta said to ensure cleanliness in the city, they had planned to explore the possibility of introducing sanitation charges in the entire city. “The system is being successfully run by the Municipal Council in Port Blair,” the Joint Commissioner said.

He said as part of the report on the study tour, the issue would be brought up for discussion in the general house.

Congress councillor Subhash Chawla, who was part of the study tour to Port Blair, Chennai and Kolkata, said, “If we have to develop the city on international standards, we will have to take some drastic steps by introducing sanitation charges for garbage collection from commercial establishments,” he said.

Chawla said, “I feel that by levying nominal charges, we can ensure a clean city.”

Congress councillor Pardeep Chhabra, who is the area councillor of Sector 22, said the project was running successfully in his sector and it should be replicated in other sectors also.

BJP councillor Saurabh Joshi, who was also part of the study tour, said imposing sanitation charges on commercial establishments was not the solution; rather the owners of these establishments should be educated to dump garbage at designated points.

Pilot project

A few years ago, the MC had introduced a garbage collection system in Sector 22 as a pilot project. Under it, its employees collect garbage from all commercial establishments against which the traders pay sanitation charges.



J&K floods leave Panchkula family high and dry
3 members rescued by Army, 5 still stranded there
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 10
The Jammu and Kashmir floods are giving anxious moments to a family in Panchkula. After a long wait and having failed to get in touch with his family members, local businessman Ashish Garg got a few moments of happiness when he saw his parents and daughter at the Chandigarh airport, but broke down when he was told that the other five members of his family are still stranded there.

The Sector 20 family had gone to Srinagar on a leisure trip. Ashish and his family had, however, stayed back. The family members got separated in the floods. While Sushil Garg (58), his wife Kusum Garg and Ashish’s eight-year-old daughter Aarna were rescued by the Army, Ashish’s sister, three-year-old niece, his sister’s mother-in-law, father-in-law and her husband are still stranded there.

“It was nothing short of a horror. We were in our hotel at Lal Chowk, which is close to the Jhelum, when the staff sounded an alert that the water had reached the first floor. We immediately packed our bags and carrying the children on our shoulders, moved out from that place,” said Sushil.

He said, “We walked for about half a kilometer and took shelter on the third floor of a hotel for some time. For three days, we remained without food.”

After that, the family walked for about 5 km and took shelter in a temporary structure on a road near the Raj Bhawan. The water level started increasing there and the family members got separated. The Army managed to rescue three members of the family while the others are still stranded there. Sushil shouted that his other family members were left behind, but to no avial.

Meanwhile, the district administration has sought donations and help from residents for the Jammu and Kashmir flood-affected.



Bribe case
I have been framed, SHO writes to IGP
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
Lodged in Burail Jail, Inspector Rajesh Shukla, former Station House Officer of the Sector 34 police station who was arrested by the CBI last week in a bribe case, today shot off a communiqué to Inspector General of Police RP Upadhyaya. In his letter addressed to the IGP, the SHO said he had been targeted by a specific lobby of police officers within the department as his promotion to the rank of DSP was due. He said he was innocent.

He has alleged harassment by the CBI and has demanded that the CCTV footage of the Burail police post should be viewed for a fair probe. Inspector Rajesh Shukla was arrested by a team of the CBI while taking a bribe of Rs 10,000 along with head constable Mukesh and constable Dilbaj Singh last week. The bribe was allegedly being demanded as monthly collection from a parking contractor in Sector 34.

In the letter sent through his counsel SPS Bhullar, Shukla has stated that the amount of Rs 10,000 allegedly recovered from him was thrust into his pocket by CBI sleuths. As he resisted, the CBI officials beat him up and manhandled him.

He said his name was on top of the list of names of inspectors to be promoted to the rank of DSP and thus he had been targeted by a specific lobby.

“I never demanded any bribe from any parking contractor. Moreover, the CBI tortured me while I remained in its custody and forced me to accept the allegations,” he said while pleading to the IGP to order a separate internal probe by a senior officer into the matter.

He has also demanded that the September 3 CCTV footage of the Burail police post should be scrutinised. Besides, the CCTV footage from August 28 evening till September 3 should also be viewed to dig out the truth.

Shukla’s counsel said the Inspector had forwarded an application to get a fair inquiry conducted as he had been falsely implicated. The letter would reach the UT IGP tomorrow, he said.



Man found murdered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
A man, believed to be in his mid-forties, was allegedly murdered near Labour Chowk in Sector 20 last night. His mutilated body was found in the morning. His head had been smashed with a stone. The victim is yet to be identified and his body has been kept at the mortuary of Government Multi-Specialty Hospital in Sector 16.

The body was spotted by a passerby at around 7 am in a pool of blood. The police recovered two pairs of slippers and a blood-stained stone from the spot.

A team, led by the Sector 19 SHO, Inspector Poonam Dilwari, reached the spot. The victim was rushed to the Government Multi-Specialty Hospital in Sector 16 where he was declared brought dead.

To ascertain the identity of the victim, the police questioned labourers working in different parts of the city. The deceased has four of his fingers missing, apparently from a surgery.



28 Verka booths coming up in Mohali
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, September 10
Verka milk and other Milkfed products will now be available to residents at a walking distance with 28 new milk booths being constructed in 16 sectors here. Work on most of the booths is nearing completion and these are likely to become functional soon. Land for the milk booths has been allotted by the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA).

An MoU in this regard had earlier been signed between the Chief Administrator, GMADA, and the Managing Director, Milkfed.

Milkfed will be appointing agents as its licensees to use these booths through the Milk Plant, Mohali. Only Verka milk and Verka products will be sold at the booths. Eatables of other brands can be sold only with the permission of Milkfed.

Against the market rent varying between Rs 7,000 and Rs 10,000 each, Verka was allotted the sites on a lease basis for Rs 3,000 per month per booth for a period of seven years.

Sector 62 is the only area that will have three Verka milk booths. Two of these will be located in the Nature Park and one in the open area near the PUDA Bhawan. Most of the other sectors will have two booths each, but Sectors 53, 54, 55, 63 and 65 have been given only one booth each.

Milk booth sites have been allotted by GMADA in Sectors 53 to 71. No site has been allotted in new Sectors 76 to 80.

Sources said the issue of allotting land for the Verka booths in Mohali was discussed at the level of the Punjab Chief Minister. Later, the matter of allotting land for 28 sites for milk booths was taken up at a meeting of the Regional Planning and Design Committee. It was suggested that the sites for the booths should be allotted as the organisation was a government set-up.

The 28 sites earmarked for the milk booths were later inspected by the Chief Administrator, GMADA, to see that the open areas for green belts were not disturbed.

GMADA has asked Milkfed to ensure that the new booths do not inconvenience the public or create traffic hazards.



Facilitating rescue operations from behind the scenes
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
As armed forces step up relief operations in the flood-hit parts of Jammu and Kashmir, managing thousands of victims evacuated from the state as well as providing logistic support to Army formations and Air Force squadrons deployed in rescue works is a herculean task.

While troops on the ground and fliers in the air go out on their daunting tasks, a large group of officers and men are quietly working behind the scenes round the clock to ensure that the relief machinery functions smoothly and effectively.

“There is activity on all fronts at continuous stretches with just a few short breaks in between,” Wg Cdr Ujjwala, Administrative Officer at the 12 Wing said.

“We have a large team engaged in coordinating between different branches and establishments, provisioning rations and supplies, handling information and processing requests. Whatever is required, we have to manage through the administrative set-up,” she said.

Managing hundreds of evacuated that are disgorged from the cavernous hold of an IL-76 aircraft is a task by itself. Heralding them into buses on the tarmac and ferrying them to a specially set-up reception area, registering their names and particulars, providing them tea and refreshments, ensuring medical care for those in need and arranging their transport to the railway station or the bus stand is a mammoth task. Then, there are people who are penniless and require financial assistance for getting back home, for which liaisoning with NGOs of the local administration is required.

“We have got to reach out to people who need us. Everyone is putting in longer than usual hours. But because of the environment and being engaged constantly in work, no one really realises the effort being put in,” Ujjwala said.

Aircraft come in at all times of the day ferrying up to 300 people at a time. An IL-76 aircraft came early this morning, followed by one aircraft in the evening and another was expected late night.

Gp Capt S Bhalla, Station Commander, said since there was no communication link with Srinagar, it was only after any aircraft made radio contact with Chandigarh Airbase on getting airborne that information about its arrival was intimated.

At one corner of the large hall, screened off from rest of the area, a medical team is engaged in providing first aid to the needy.

“Most of the persons we have examined complain of body aches, nausea and headaches, showing symptoms of fatigue and stress,” said Wg Cdr Arun Kumar, a medical officer at the 12 Wing.



Clown workshop dwells on journey of self-exploration
Mehakdeep Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
The Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Akademi (CSNA), hall was bustling with activity and invited loud guffaws from the audience. The room had been set in commotion as the 30 participants, who had gathered to attend the workshop — Clown Town — were twirling around, dancing, throwing their limbs at each other and rolling on the floor for they had been asked by their facilitators to let their inner clown out and enjoy every action.

The five-day workshop — which got underway on Wednesday — is being facilitated by the Delhi-based Purple Mangoes and is being organised by the Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Akademi.

Dwelling into the details about the concept of the workshop, the resource person, Sumedha Sharma said, “Clowning is a theatre art form that includes freeing oneself from all roles except one’s own. It is an age-old form of theatre that has been used to heal, connect with the self and the audiences, to make them laugh, love and think.”

The workshop, that has been interspersed with a sense of experiencing every emotion right from the beginning, like taking the first step, first sneeze, first look of self and others along with comedy and bits of let one loose, had set the participants on a journey to rediscover themselves.

Sharma further elaborated that the workshop is about taking a journey that enables one to look within oneself.

She said, “It is a process of finding the inner ‘clown’ that resides in each of us; the clown that is bare of masks, identities and the walls we build around ourselves to protect ourselves from the world. The clown accepts this nakedness and loves to show it off.”

“Our workshop process involves self exploration and introspection through improvisations, body work, understanding our body and its language/movement, storytelling, conversations; and in all of this tapping into our sense of humour,” she added.



Amid protest, demolition drive at Raipur Khurd abandoned
Tribune News Service

Residents of Raipur Khurd block the passage of an earthmoving machine that was brought to pull down illegal structures in the village on Wednesday. TRibune Photos: Manoj Mahajan

Officials of the UT Estate Office seal a newly built illegal residential structure in Raipur Khurd village.

Chandigarh, September 10
A major demolition drive by the UT to pull down at least 50 structures in Raipur Khurd village had to be abandoned in face of wide public protest. The office of the Land Acquisition Collector (LAC) after carrying out a survey had identified the illegal structures that had come up in violation of the Periphery Act. All the illegal structures are on the agricultural land, which are not acquired.

After failing to pull down the structures, the UT sealed 13 stuctures, including two godowns and a residential structures. The Land Acquisition Collector (LAC), Tilak Raj along with the SDM (South), Kashish Mittal, and SDM (Central) Danish Ashraf led the demolition drive.

The LAC said those undertaking new constructions were warned to stop the construction with immediate effect or face action. As soon as the drive started, a number of women residents sat in front of two JCB machines and raised slogans against the UT officials. The villagers also tried to block the passage of the officials.

Meanwhile, the Youth Congress today protested against the demolition. The Chandigarh Youth Congress activists burnt the effigy of MP Kirron Kher on the spot. They alleged that the BJP leaders and the local MP did not come to the spot in support of the residents.



Haryana Assembly poll
Former UT Mayor Gian Chand to contest from P’kula
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 10
The former Mayor of Chandigarh, Gian Chand Gupta, finally managed to get the ticket of the BJP for the Vidhan Sabha elections from Panchkula. In 1997, he was the Mayor of Chandigarh and now he is all set to give a tough fight to other parties. Gupta was the party president of the district BJP unit when Prime Minister Narendra Modi was working for the party in Panchkula.

The central leadership had finalised his candidature from the coveted Panchkula seat yesterday, amongst the 43 seats, decided by the Central Parliamentary Board of the party headed by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah.

For Gupta who has worked with Modi, development is the need of the hour.

“People are totally fed up of the corrupt incumbent government in the State for the last 10 years. I already had the honour of working with the Prime Minister while Narendra Modi was the in-charge of Haryana and Chandigarh before becoming the Chief Minister of Gujarat,” said Gupta.

He was the state treasurer of the party in Haryana and presently National Executive Member of the Business Cell of BJP.

Gupta also lashed charges of non-development on the present Congress legislator. He claimed that if he wins, infrastructural development including hospitals and professional colleges will be opened in the constituency.

Gupta asserted that the BJP is set for a two-third majority in the State Assembly Elections. He reiterated that he was committed to work for the people of his constituency.



F&CC to discuss renting out of Sec 17 Plaza on Sundays
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
The Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) of the municipal corporation (MC) in its meeting scheduled for Thursday, will be discussing the issue of renting out the Sector 17 Plaza for functions on Sundays. At present, the Plaza is rented out on Saturdays only.

The civic body charges Rs 25,000 for one day to organise promotional functions at Sector 17.

MC officials said that the rationale behind the move was to generate revenue. “People want that the place be rented out on Sundays too. Following this, we have planned to rent out the place on both Saturdays and Sundays”, officials added.

The F&CC will also discuss purchasing of serum for the dog bite victims at the meeting.

The MC officials said that earlier the tenders for procuring the serum were floated, however, witnessing lukewarm response, the civic body decided to go for re-tendering. “By the time the re-tendering is done to procure the serum, the MC would have procured it directly”, said an official.

The serum will be provided at the Civil Dispensary in Sector 19 and Sector 38.

The issue of hiring field staff for repairing streetlights across the city will also be discussed during the meeting. The agenda to hire electricians and helpers will be tabled in the meeting.

Will generate revenue

MC officials said that the rationale behind the move was to generate revenue. “People want that the place be rented out on Sundays too. Following this, we have planned to rent out the place on both Saturdays and Sundays”, officials added. The F&CC will also discuss purchasing of serum for the dog bite victims at the meeting.



Heritage festival kicks off at Tagore Theatre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
Contemporary dance acts, presented by Sapphire Creations Dance Company, Kolkata, and US-based Robert Moses’ Kin, set the momentum for the 6th Chandigarh Arts and Heritage Festival that got underway at Tagore Theatre here today.

Sapphire Creations Dance act “Parivahitam”, which was directed by Sudarshan Chakravorty, had six dancers performing on pulsating music by Srinjay Banerjee. It was based on the theme of discomfort that individuals feel at this present time and the nostalgia that brings solace but not solution.

The dance rendition, which was supported with music, had a character of its own. It won thunderous applauses from the audience.

The second act by artistic director Robert Moses, who is known to create broad repertory of works of varying styles and genres, once again gave the audience a treat of plethora of dance acts.

The scintillating performance included acts of oral traditions in the African-American culture, life, times and work of author James Baldwin, the dark side of contemporary urban culture, the nuanced complexities of parentage and identity, the interception of faith and fables in modern life and the simple joy and expressive power of pure movement.

The act was power-packed with a lot of different styles. There were some classical, folk and gypsy styles as well.



Graft: Head constable sent to judicial custody
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
A day after a traffic police head constable was arrested by the CBI in a bribe case, a local court today sent the accused to 14 days judicial custody. The CBI had yesterday arrested head constable Paramjeet Singh, for demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs 1,000 from an auto driver, Narotam, for not challaning his vehicle.

The CBI received a complaint from the auto driver and laid a trap near the Kisan Bhawan roundabout in Sector 35 where he was caught red handed.

The accused Paramjit was caught with the bribe money wrapped in a white coloured paper which was recovered from him.

CBI officials said Paramjeet had challaned Narotam’s auto, who was the complainant in the case.The auto driver got his vehicle released after paying Rs 4,000 as challan fee after he failed to pay the bribe of Rs 1,200 demanded by the traffic police on September 2. His vehicle was challaned for various offences like not carrying document and the constable had then challaned him for more offences after he failed to pay the bribe demanded then.On September 4, the head constable again spotted Narotam riding the auto-rickshaw.

He again demanded bribe and threatened to challan him, if he failed to pay this time. Narotam then complained to the CBI following which a trap was laid.



Age no deterrent for this Good Samaritan
Major Surat Sandhu contributes Rs 1.01 lakh to J&K Relief Fund
Mehakdeep Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
Age fails to deter Good Samaritan Major Surat Sandhu’s (retd) spirit of generosity as even at 97, he still continues to contribute to calamity funds. Major Sandhu, who can barely walk now, has always been at the forefront when it comes to contributing to any natural calamity funds.

In 2001, the infantry man had pedalled his way to The Tribune office to hand over a cheque of Rs 90,000 to be deposited in the Gujarat Chief Minister’s Earthquake Relief Fund.

He also contributed Rs 1 lakh to the Ladakh Relief Fund in 2010. Last year, he had contributed Rs 1 lakh to the Uttarakhand Relief Fund.

The spirited soldier has once again taken a leap forward and contributed Rs 1.01 lakh to the Jammu and Kashmir Relief Fund.

While recounting his association with Srinagar, he said: “I had served in the Valley for five years (from 1951 to 1954). I can understand very well the kind of problems people must be facing there.”

On what motivates him, he said: “I donate on humanitarian grounds. I know how precious a life is. I have served in a war. I understand the value and worth of every life and contribution.”

He said: “While the Army is doing its best, I wanted to do a little contribution from my end as well.”



Google acquires Appurify

Google has acquired Appurify, an app-testing startup. Appurify was founded on April 1, 2012 by Rahul Jain and three others. Appurify offers a platform for developers to debug and test their mobile apps. Rahul Jain is now engaged as the Director of Engineering at Sidecar.

SAMI Direct introduces Calci D MaxTM

SAMI Direct, a health science company, has introduced a new product Calci D MaxTM, a unique combination of clinically proven ingredients to support bone health. Calci D MaxTM is a unique composition derived from calcium citrate malate, a water soluble supplement, which facilitates calcium retention and maintains bone mass.

Godfrey Phillips launches new product

Godfrey Phillips India (GPI) today announced the launch of new product Pan Vilas Silver Dewz, a mouth freshener, under the Pan Vilas brand. The new product was launched by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) team players—Yusuf Pathan, Piyush Chawla, Suryakumar Yadav along with Venky S Mysore, CEO and MD of Kolkata Knight Riders. — TNS



Central University Status
PU to raise issue with HRD Minister
Smriti Irani will be in the city to attend a retreat on higher education this month
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
Panjab University (PU) will take up the issue of a Central university status for the varsity with Union Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani, who will be in the city for a retreat on higher education. The meet will be attended by the Vice-Chancellors of 40 Central universities along with the directors of IITs and IIM’s to discuss issues of higher education.

Highly-placed sources said as the university was recently ranked Asia’s top university in the Times Higher Education Rankings, the authorities will press for their long-pending demand.

PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Arun Kumar Grover said, “This will be determined by the MHRD and Punjab government. There is a large difference between the norms of the Central Universities and PU Act. But we hope that a similar treatment will be given to the PU.”

Records reveal that in 2008, the state government had written a letter to the Union government to consider giving Central status to Panjab University. However, the request was later withdrawn by the authorities.

A senior PU official said, “If the university gets a Central university status, colleges in Punjab affiliated to PU will continue to remain affiliated to it.”

However, the 40 per cent grant — which Panjab University receives from the state government — would be stopped.

The university receives 60 per cent of its budget deficit from Chandigarh and the remaining from Punjab.

Over the past few years, the state government had frozen its grant to the university at Rs 16 crore instead of 40 per cent of the deficit.

The Central status university will mean higher salaries for teachers and increase in retirement age from the current 60 years to 65 years. It will also mean that there would be a sufficient budget allocation for the university. Research students will be benefited and the cost of forms and prospectuses will be uniform such as in other Central universities.

Meanwhile, PU Senator Shelley Walia said, “In the past, the proposal of a Central university was rejected by the Union government. But after achieving the prestigious ranking, the government should reconsider it.”

How it will benefit Panjab University

  • Higher salaries for teachers.
  • Increase in retirement age from 60 years to 65 years.
  • Sufficient budget allocation.
  • Research students will be benefited and the cost of forms and prospectuses will be uniform on the lines of other Central varsities.



PU hostel inmates shut canteen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 10
High drama was staged at Panjab University today as the inmates of Hostel No. 6 (boys), protested against the contractor for serving them unhygienic food for the last fortnight. The inmates forcefully shut the canteen today afternoon. As many as 570 inmates reside in the boys’ hostel, which is the largest hostel on the campus.

The students alleged that several complaints had been lodged with the authorities concerned but the quality of food had not been improved.

The students said they had complained about the contractor to the authorities five days ago but to no avail.

PU Dean Student Welfare Navdeep Goyal said, “Action has been taken against the contractor and his contract has been cancelled from today. During a surprise visit to the hostel, I found irregularities in the canteen bills and have asked the contractor to rectify the bills at the earliest.”

Hostel warden Vishal Sharma confirmed that the issue had been raised numerous times by students and complaints had been made to the higher authorities.

“A week ago, the inmates called me to the hostel mess as there was no worker to prepare breakfast for them. The boys cooked for themselves,” added Sharma. He alleged that he found a loaf of bread, whose deadline had expired, in the hostel kitchen following which he recommended action against the contractor.

‘Action taken against contractor’

Action has been taken against the contractor and his contract has been cancelled from today. During a surprise visit to the hostel, I found irregularities in the canteen bills and have asked the contractor to rectify the bills at the earliest. — Navdeep Goyal, Dean Student Welfare, PU



Affiliated schools of PSEB in a dilemma
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 10
The fate of thousands of students of nearly 4,700 affliated schools of Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) hangs in the balance as the state education authorities have directed the school managements to furnish the self-declaration letters, explaining their status of fulfilling mandatory terms and conditions under the Right to Education Act.

The deadline of submitting the letters has been set September 30 by the authorities. “In the letter, every school has to update the authorities about its progress in last three years and state the steps taken by them in direction of fulfilling the terms and conditions. Apart from that the schools have been asked to furnish the fresh details of its entire infrastructure including number of teachers, their qualification etc,” said the authorities.

After getting the self-declaration letters, our teams will inspect the schools, said the authorities while adding that schools found with inappropriate infrastructure or staff could be closed down.

Notably, it is an open secret that out of around 4,700 such schools, only a handful of schools are in position to fulfill the terms and conditions in question. “Most of the schools cater to poor students. Our fee structure is also low so fulfilling all terms and conditions for us is a herculean task,” said an owner of an associated school.

On the other hand, the education department is determined on the issue of bringing the education as well as the schools standard up to mark. “If required, we would terminate the association status of the schools, in case of non-fulfillment of the terms and conditions,” said the authorities. 



Newly elected students’ council administered oath
Tribune News Service

(From left) PUCSC president Divyanshu Budhiraja, vice-president Snigdha Bawa, Vice-Chancellor AK Grover, joint secretary Abhishek Thapar and secretary Ankur Sehrawat at Panjab University on Wednesday. Tribune Photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, September 10
The newly elected representatives of the Panjab University Campus Students Council were administered the oath of office at a ceremony held at the physics auditorium on the campus here today.

The oath ceremony was conducted by Prof Nandita, Dean, Student Welfare (women), while Prof Arun Kumar Grover, Vice-Chancellor, presided over the function.

Divyanshu Budhiraja, president; Snigdha Bawa, vice-president; Ankur Sehrawat, secretary; and Abhishek Thapar, joint secretary; were administered the oath of office. The executive committee was administered oath separately, while the rest of the department representatives were sworn in collectively.

In the executive elections, the Panjab University Students Union (PUSU) won four seats, while one was won by the National Students Union of India (NSUI).



From schools
Planetarium show

Chandigarh: The Tribune Model School organised a planetarium show in collaboration with the Orange Planetarium, New Delhi. Students of Classes LKG to X enjoyed the show.

International Ozone Day

International Ozone Day was celebrated by Parrot Eco-Club of the Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 21A. The students spoke on the ozone layer, including its significance, and depletion.


The Government Senior Secondary School, Raipur Khurd, organised activities on ‘Conservation of bio-diversity.’ Poster-making competition and a paper-reading contest were held.

Grandparents Day

Gurukul Global School, Mani Majra, organised a function on the occasion of Grandparents Day today.

Awareness on ozone layer

International Ozone Day was celebrated with fervour by the students of the eco club at St Joseph’s Senior Secondary School-44.

DPS brings laurels

Delhi Public School has been ranked the state-level no. 1 and city-level no. 1 among the co-ed day schools in the Education World India School Rankings 2014. — TNS



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |