Gloom watch

The response of the MoS for Urban Development to Parliament on suicides within Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) premises has been met with incredulity even within the corridors of the corporation itself.

Written by Express News Service | Published:August 12, 2013 12:32 am

The response of the MoS for Urban Development to Parliament on suicides within Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) premises has been met with incredulity even within the corridors of the corporation itself. The Minister told Lok Sabha that to reduce number of suicides,DMRC and CISF personnel at the stations had been instructed to keep an eye out for “gloomy people”. However,a DMRC official said it was simply impossible to monitor this. “If we were to look for gloomy people,every traveller returning home after work in Delhi would qualify under that criterion,” he said.

Payment please

A petition was recently filed by a retired policeman in the Delhi High Court to quash non-bailable warrants against him for failing to give evidence as a witness. The man had appeared before a metropolitan court,but had refused to testify till he received the “diet money”,an amount that is paid as compensation for the witnesses’ travel expenses. The High Court allowed the plea to quash NBWs,issued by the magistrate of the lower court,saying that the magistrate could have arrested him for his conduct,but should not have issued NBWs as he had actually appeared in court.

Dialoguing at DU

The release of books on Delhi University’s four-year undergraduate programme was met with not just criticism,but a sense of disbelief. A section in the books for ‘Language,Literature and Creativity’ is on ‘Dialoguing with Nature’. An exercise in this section reads: “Imagine that you are a tree and have not been treated well by human beings. Write a short conversation between you and a human being telling them your feelings when they treated you badly and how you were forced to become stationary because of their ill treatment.”

All in the name

At a recent protest by medical students against the addition of an extra,compulsory year of rural posting in the five-year MBBS course,a top functionary of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) and a senior doctor invited thunderous applause for his dig at the Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad. “The man heading the Health Ministry has a unique name. His first name is Ghulam and his last name is Azad. His name is so contradictory… that is why there is so much resistance,so much indecisiveness on his part to take any step. He plans something at night and does a U-turn in the morning. We do not want such a man at the helm of affairs,” the doctor said.

Witness this

A man and his wife were injured in an accident caused allegedly due to drink driving. The man had filed a criminal case and on the day of his cross-examination,came fully prepared to face the defence. Two young defence lawyers found it hard to get one straight answer from the man. When asked about the make of the vehicle that hit him,he answered that he was too busy attending to his wife. When asked how he knew that the accused in the case was inebriated,he said the accident had only cost him his teeth,but not his nose. When asked how he managed to take his wife to the hospital when he was himself injured,he commented that even when injured,he could walk faster than the young lawyers. He then turned his attention to the young magistrate presiding in the court and began complaining how the defence lawyers were always late in attending the court proceedings. His lectures on the lacunae of the judicial system drew hoots from the audience,one of whom kept chanting “What a witness!” at each cheeky retort.

Finger on the lips

Shrinking “democratic space” has long been an issue in Delhi University,with sections of students and teachers holding demonstrations at the alleged high handedness of the university administration. However,matters seem to have come to a head with teachers being pulled up for talking to the media — in a particular case,a teacher was sent a showcause notice for speaking about the infrastructure woes of the university. “A colleague was issued a showcause notice for telling the media that fans in classrooms weren’t functional,” a teacher from an off-campus college said.

Quick clearance

The Delhi government is trying to clear all major infrastructure projects before the Assembly elections scheduled for later this year. An amount of Rs 15.41 crore has been sanctioned for strengthening of the road from Britannia Chowk to Outer Ring Road,and the project is expected to be complete within the next six-months. Meanwhile,another Rs 11.32 crore has been sanctioned for strengthening of a road from Metcalfe House crossing to Majnu Ka Tila. The government says the work in the project will be completed within the next eight months.

Coveted post

After B S Bassi’s appointment as the Delhi Police Commissioner,several officers now want to serve as Staff Officer to the Commissioner. In fact,several DCP rank officers hoped to be selected for the coveted post. However,the name that finally made it surprised many at the police headquarters. DCP J S Deswal,who was incharge of the airport and had recently been transferred to Licensing Unit,was chosen for the post. Interestingly,this will be Deswal’s second tenure as the Commissioner’s Staff Officer,as he had served under former Commissioner B K Gupta who was succeeded by Neeraj Kumar.

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