As Punjab and Haryana squabble over the status of Chandigarh, the people living here for decades speak of retaining its unique cultural and autonomous identity. NK Jhingan, a resident of Chandigarh for more than 50 years, said: “Chandigarh is losing its identity steadily despite the precarious balance maintained due to the influence of bureaucracy in the city. “I foresee Chandigarh as another Ludhiana or Jalandhar if transferred to Punjab,” and city resident for 55 years and Manimajra resident welfare association (RWA) president Colonel Gursewak Singh said. Bridled by the states, the city can realise its immense potential only after being free.”Industrialists and converted plot owners association chairman Chander Verma said: “Doing trade can be easier only when Chandigarh becomes an independent entity.” The conflict will only compromise Chandigarh’s identity.”Chandigarh Beopar Mandal president Anil Vohra, a resident for more than 60 years, said: “The limited land in the city is shared by natives as well as immigrants.
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