03012022-CT-01.qxd 1/3/2022 1:00 AM Page 1 c m y b Chandigarh TRIBUNE MONDAY | 3 JANUARY 2022 | CHANDIGARH THREE BOOKED FOR FIRING INTO THE AIR IN GHARUAN Two groups of youths staying as paying guests in Kumbhra clash with each other over a minor altercation. FORECAST PARTLY CLOUDY TRICITY COVID REPORT CHD SAMPLES TESTED POSITIVE RECOVERED NEW CASES ACTIVE CHANGE DEATHS NEW P’KULA MOHALI 8,71,101 66,061 64,661 96 321 85 1,079 0 5,16,368 31,058 30,548 32 129 22 381 0 7,10,594 69,244 68,005 53 164 50 1,075 1 AIR QUALITY INDEX CHANDIGARH 207 PANCHKULA 182 MOHALI 216 401-500 301-400 201-300 101-200 51-100 0-50 SEVERE VERY POOR POOR MODERATE SATISFACTORY GOOD INBRIEF BATTERIES OF 4 CARS STOLEN Chandigarh:Batteries of four cars were stolen in Mani Majra. According to the police, complainant Kartar Singh, a resident of Shanti Nagar, Mani Majra, reported that an unknown person broke the windowpane of his Tata Tiago car parked near the Shivalik garden and stole the battery on the intervening night of December 31 and January 1. The suspect also broke the windowpanes of three other cars parked there and stole the batteries. The police have registered a case at the Mani Majra police station. TNS PAGE 3 PAGE 3 MOHALI TO GIVE LIBRARIES TO SOCIAL ORGANISATIONS TOP SEED NIYATI ENTERS MAIN DRAW IN TENNIS TOURNAMENT Mohali civic body decides to hand over all libraries in the city to social organisations for their maintenance. MAX 21°C | MIN 6°C | YESTERDAY MAX 20.8°C | MIN 6.2°C SUNSET MONDAY 5:35 PM Top seed Indian player Niyati Kukreti defeats Sreenidhi Reddy, confirms berth in main draw of tennis tourney. SUNRISE TUESDAY 7:19 AM TWITTER/THETRIBUNECHD FACEBOOK/CHANDIGARHTRIBUNE Babla,wife join BJP ahead of mayoral poll Sandeep Rana Tribune News Service Chandigarh, January 2 In a major political development and boost to the local BJP senior Congress leader , Devinder Singh Babla, along with his councillor wife Harpreet Kaur, today joined the saffron party ahead of the mayoral poll. Now, the BJP has 14 votes, including that of ex officio member of the House and local MP Kirron Kher, equal to those of AAP ahead of the , secret ballot for electing the Mayor, Senior Deputy Mayor and the Deputy Mayor. The polling date is yet to be announced. The Congress tally has got reduced to seven. There are indications that more Congress men may join the BJP in the coming days. After joining the BJP at its Sector 33 office this afternoon, Babla alleged, “Parivarvaad has increased in the Congress. The city party president has made no contribution. During the poll campaign, his phones used to remain switched off. Giving the ticket is not enough. There was a vacuum in the party and everyone felt that someone should raise a voice. While Bansal ji remained involved as treasurer in Delhi, there was no one to take care of the party.” “AAP had also approached Setback for Cong|Saffron party now has 14 votes, equal to those of AAP, for crucial elections Will Bablas’ switchover benefit AAP? Sandeep Rana Tribune News Service Councillor Harpreet Kaur Babla joins the BJP in the presence of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar at the BJP office in Sector 33, Chandigarh, on Sunday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: PRADEEP TEWARI ❝ Parivarvaad has increased in the Congress. The city party president has made no contribution. During the poll campaign, his phones used to remain switched off. There was a vacuum in the party and everyone felt that someone should raise a voice. ❞ Devinder Singh Babla me with the offer of mayorship and a post of a chairman of a board/committee if it came to power in Punjab. It is offering money to councillors. However, I cannot be with a party which makes false promises such as providing water free of cost. I have got so much love in the BJP from all,” said the former Leader of the Opposition in the MC House. His wife Harpreet Kaur had won from ward number 10, a seat reserved for women, by the highest margin of 3,103 votes. “The vote was not for the Congress, but for the work done by Babla ji. It was a vote for the Babla ‘brand’. In fact, many from the BJP supported us during the poll,” she said. City Congress president PAGE 3 Subhash Chawla said, “The party had expelled Babla after various complaints of indecent behaviour and antiparty activities yesterday evening. I opened that email today. It seems the scene created by him at the oath ceremony was part of his plan to please his new bosses.” “Everything was okay for continued on page 2 Chandigarh, January 2 The exit of senior Congress leader Devinder Singh Babla and his councillor wife Harpreet Kaur from the party may benefit AAP if Babla’s wife is fielded as the Mayor candidate by the BJP . The Mayor’s post is reserved for a woman in the first year. There are speculations that Harpreet may be the BJP choice for the post. Sources said the decision might benefit AAP that needs five votes to prove its majority and elect its Mayor since the possibility of Congress councillors voting for the AAP candidate to ensure Harpreet’s defeat could not be ruled out. City Congress chief Subhash Chawla told Chandigarh Tribune that his party would decide the strategy based on the BJP’s mayoral candidate. “We will not tolerate that our party defector (Harpreet Kaur) becomes the Mayor. If she is fielded, we will change our strategy and see what we can do,” said Chawla. There are speculations that the Congress may play the MAYORAL POLL CURRENT SCENARIO BJP AAP CONG 14* 14 7 MAJORITY MARK 19 SAD 1 *including ex officio member i.e. local MP ■ If three parties — the BJP, the Con- gress and AAP — field their candidates, the one who gets the least number of votes will be out. ■ Then, voting will again be held for the remaining two contestants. The one who gets the majority mark of 19 votes out of 36 will be the Mayor. MOGA FRIENDS TOGETHER ■ Arun Sood and Babla both belong to Moga in Punjab and have family relations as well, but remained in opposite parties all these years. ■ There were often talks on a lighter note in MC House meetings about “Moge wale bhra.” On Sunday, some leaders smiled, “Moge wale bhra” are together now.” kingmaker. The party may support AAP as voting by councillors is held through continued on page 3 Road mishaps leave 2 scooterists dead MOHALI: Two persons lost their lives in road accidents. In a hitand-run case reported from near IT City, an elderly scooterist was killed after being hit by a rashly driven SUV around 6.30 pm on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as Maghar Singh, a resident of Maloya. Eyewitnesses said the SUV driver fled the spot after the accident. Meanwhile, a scooterist (57 ) was killed after being hit by a car near the Dappar toll plaza on January 1. The deceased has been identified as Digambar Prasad, a resident of Zirakpur, who was coming from Ambala to Baltana. Prasad suffered head injuries and was rushed to the GMCH-32, but died on the way. — TNS Naraingarh couple duped of ~9.13 lakh CHANDIGARH: A consultant has been booked for allegedly duping a couple of ~9.13 lakh on the pretext of providing a visa. According to the police, Atinder Singh, a resident of Naraingarh village in Mohali district, alleged that Kamal Kumar Bhumbla and others of BN Overseas EDU Services, Sector 8, cheated him on the pretext of providing a study visa of Switzerland to him and his wife. A case has been registered at the Sector 3 police station. — TNS Tricity logs new high of 181 Covid-19 cases UT jabs over 68K in week, its 2nd best Tribune News Service A market wears a deserted look in Sector 20, Panchkula, on Sunday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: RAVI KUMAR Covid curbs back in P’kula; Sec7 traders create scene Tribune News Service Panchkula, January 2 High drama was witnessed at the Sector 7 market here as shopkeepers refused to shut their shops when the police went there asking them to close their shops in view of the directions issued by the district administration today. The traders kept their shops open till 6.30 pm. Later, however, they brought down the shutters after being persuaded by the police. Sanjeev Goyal, general secretary, Panchkula District Chemists Association, said not a single chemist was allowed to open after 5 pm while bars and restaurants were allowed to operate till 9 pm. Rakesh Aggarwal, a resident of Sector 12, said he visited a number of markets in the city to get a medicine as a member of his family had fever. He said he was surprised to see all chemists in the city closed. Later, he was able to get the medicine from a medical store of a private hospital in Sector 21. He said the district administration should have allowed medical shops to remain open to enable residents to pur- Cinemas, pools to remain closed till Jan 12; bars, eateries to operate at 50% capacity Chandigarh, January 2 The tricity witnessed a new high as it logged 181 cases during the past 24 hours, witnessing its highest single-day spike since mid-June 2021. Covid cases continue to climb in Chandigarh with the UT reporting 96 cases on Sunday. The active infections have reached 321 in the city. However, hospitalisation is relatively on the lower side as only 26 of them are currently in hospital. A total of 11 patients recovered from the virus. The positivity rate mounted to 5.5 per cent. MOHALI SEES 53 FRESH CASES, ONE DEATH Mohali district reported 53 new cases and one Covid death. As many as 51 cases surfaced in Mohali (urban) and two in rural areas. The case tally has now reached 69,244 in the district, while there are 164 active cases. In Mohali, only five patients are Naina Mishra Tribune News Service Hospitalisation low; most patients in home isolation admitted and the remaining are in home isolation. 32 CASES SURFACE IN PANCHKULA As many as 32 fresh cases of Covid surfaced in Panchkula district in the past 24 hours, taking the total number of cases to 31,058. No death was reported on Sunday, while 10 patients recovered from the disease. The number of active cases is 129, of which only 15 are hospitalised and the remaining are in home isolation. The tricity is witnessing a surge in coronavirus infections over the last week following the emergence of the Omicron variant. Chandigarh, January 2 The city has achieved its second-biggest weekly vaccination rate by administering 68,294 doses in the week ending December 31. This is the highest ever since the Covid-19 vaccination started in January 2021. With this pace of vaccination, 90 per cent eligible population of the city is now fully immunised against Covid-19. The vaccination increased in the wake of curbs imposed by the UT Administration as per which no entry to public places, hotels, public transport, banks and offices was allowed to unvaccinated individuals. From August 14 to August 20, as many as 72,741 doses were administered in Chandigarh, the highest number of weekly doses so far. Consequently, more than 10,000 doses are being 90% eligible population now fully immunised administered daily in Chandigarh and many among the takers are those who had their second dose due. Even now, Chandigarh has 1,56,142 beneficiaries who have missed their second dose. The Director, Health Services, Dr Suman Singh, said, “The vaccination rate is satisfactory these days as many people who had their second dose due have turned up. This is our only guard against Covid-19 and the imminent surge. Vaccination is going to protect us from the severity of the disease and hospitalisation even after getting infected with Covid. For those who have missed their second dose, they must get it as soon as possible.” The Health Department has added 20 teams for vaccination. 17,000 DOSES IN PRIVATE FACILITIES LYING UNUSED About 17,000 doses of Covishield are available with private health facilities in the city. It is unlikely that these can be utilised by the private health facilities before its expiry date in the next threefour months. To avoid any wastage of the vaccine, the UT will consider replacing these doses with a fresh stock available with the UT Administration and thereafter the doses nearer to expiry dates will be utilised on priority. City set to jab children from today As cases head north, UT 6 health facilities to double as vax centres for 72K beneficiaries Tribune News Service Shopkeepers argue with the police in Sector 7, Panchkula, on Sunday. chase medicines in case of an emergency. Meanwhile, in exercise of powers conferred under provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, District Collector Mahavir Kaushik has extended the period of “Epidemic AlertSafe Haryana” till 5 am on January 12. As per the orders, all cinema halls, theatres and multiplexes in the district will remain closed. Along with this, all sports complexes, stadia, swimming pools (except for the purpose of training of players participating in national and international competitions and for organising national and international competitions) will remain closed. All entertainment parks and B2B exhibitions have also been banned. In government and private offices (except for emergency/essential services), only 50 per cent staff will work. Malls and markets will also be able to open till 5 pm. Bars and restaurants will be allowed to operate at 50 per continued on page 3 shuts activities at Sukhna Tribune News Service Chandigarh, January 2 Six health facilities in the city will double as vaccination centres for 72,000 eligible children in the 15-18 age group from tomorrow. The centres, including the PGI and the GMCH, Sector 32, will attempt to vaccinate at least 200 children each daily. All slots have been booked for the first day in all major six health facilities, while 100 slots each were vacant at Government Senior Secondary School, Dhanas, and Government Model Senior Secondary School, Modern Housing Complex, Mani Majra. continued on page 2 Chandigarh, January 2 In view of rising Covid cases, the UT Administration has decided to close all activities, including boating, at Sukhna Lake from Monday to Saturday. The Administration, however, has given a few hours relaxation for morning and evening walkers for six days. The lake will remain completely shut every Sunday. The orders were issued today by UT Adviser Dharam Pal, which will come into force from January 3 and continue till further orders. As per the orders, people will be allowed to have a morning walk from 5 am to 9 c m y b Preparations underway for the vaccination of children at the GMSH, Sector 16, in Chandigarh on Sunday. PRADEEP TEWARI VACCINATION CENTRES ■ Advanced Paediatrics Centre, PGI, Sec 12 ■ GMSH, Sec 16 (auditorium site 2) ■ GMCH, Sector 32 (Level 5, Block B) ■ Civil Hospital, Mani Majra ■ Civil Hospital, Sec 22 ■ Civil Hospital, Sec 45 ■ Govt Sr Secondary School, Dhanas ■ Govt Model Senior Secondary School, MHC, Mani Majra ■ Govt Model High School, RC-Il, Maloya A few hrs relaxation for morning, evening walkers LAKE TO BE CLOSED ON SUNDAYS The lake will remain completely shut every Sunday. The orders were issued on Sunday by UT Adviser Dharam Pal, which will come into force from January 3 and continue till further orders. am and evening walk between 6 pm and 8 pm. A UT official said visitors would be allowed during the hours of relaxation only if they followed the Covid protocol. The police have been directed continued on page 2
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