|Sunday, April 23, 2000,
to introduce green panchayats
hike in college fees in offing
Bhalai Manch to gherao PM
of Sarpanch kicks up row
urged to reject Bill
land to be cleared of encroachments
to end water shortage
project to pound stray cows
Sikhs seek SC rights
men protest against price rise
robbed of Rs 2 lakh
planned to free Pak detainee
students sit on fast
allocation for education: AIFUCTO
card system in govt schools soon
to set up mills opposed
mill dispute settled
Punjab to introduce green
CHANDIGARH, April 22 Having lowest forest cover in the country, Punjab has introduced a concept of green panchayats to promote social forestry and forest cover in the state.
Punjab has forest cover which is less than 10 per cent of its area whereas the required forest cover under norms is 33 per cent. Over the years, major forest areas in the state have been put to axe for making land available for agriculture. This is one of the major pitfalls of the green revolution towards which serious attention has not been paid so far as farmers and the state government have been more obsessed with increasing food production than maintaining the ecological balance.
The State Panchayati Raj Department has planned to plant about 15 lakh saplings in July and August. The status of green panchayats will be bestowed on those which will have maximum surviving plants on village common lands and in schools and at other places. Besides, giving suitable prize money for special development projects to such panchayats, top priority will be given to release routine grants to such villages.
Confirming the introduction of the green panchayat concept, Mr J.S. Kesar, Secretary, Panchayati Raj, Punjab, told TNS today that criteria was being determined to select green panchayats. The first parameter will be the number of surviving plants in proportions to the population of the village. The second will be the availability of land for plantation purposes. He said some villages had vast tracts of panchayat land while others had either less or no landed property.
Keeping in mind all these factors, officers concerned have been trying to come out with a formula for fair selection of green panchayats. Such panchayats will be selected at block, district level and also at the state level. Best panchayats will be declared as state green panchayats. He said he had discussed details of this scheme also with the senior officers concerned of the Punjab Forest Department.Stress will be laid on the plantation of indigenous species.
Meanwhile, the Panchayati Raj Department has sought the ownership of property worth several crores, which is in the possession of the State Revenue Department. Till 1952, the property was with district boards. Then a decision was taken to transfer the property to Zila Parishads and Block Samitis. At certain places the property was transferred to the Revenue Department instead of Zila Parishads.
Mr Kesar said the department had taken up the issue with the Revenue Department authorities for the transfer of the landed property to Zila Parishads. Giving instances in this connection, he said there was a property worth several crores near Chaura Bazar in Ludhiana and near district courts in Jalandhar. With the transfer of the property, revenue to the department would increase several times.
The department has also
come out with a new policy for giving the
panchayats lands on rent. The department has fixed
a minimum rent of Rs 4000 per acre for a fully irrigated
land and Rs 2,000 for a semi-irrigated land. In the state
panchayats own nearly 2 lakh hectares of land. Mr Kesar
said that at various places vested interests had
developed monopoly on the panchayat lands and the
department wanted to break such a hold. He said in case
of more than 10 per cent variation in the rent fixed by
the department, the officials concerned given the right
to auction such lands for rent purposes would have to
take permission from the Director, Panchayats.
Harpreets ashes immersed
JALANDHAR, April 22 The rumour mills kept most local scribes on their toes for the most part of the day today with anonymous calls that one of the gunmen of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee Chief Bibi Jagir Kaur, whose daughter had died under mysterious circumstances yesterday, was killed by the residents of Begowal village in Kapurthala district.
Meanwhile, the ashes of Harpreet Kaur, the 19-year-old daughter of Bibi Jagir Kaur were immersed in the Beas river at Goindwal Sahib last evening, where a tree was also planted in her memory in the Smriti Van.
The ashes of Harpreet were immersed at 7.30 pm last evening where the relatives, friends of family and hundreds of people of the area reached in a procession from Begowal. The immersion of ashes on the same day has again set the rumour mills working. The act was against established norms and tradition according to which ashes were immersed after three days of cremation and not on the same day.
However, both Mr Iqbal Singh and Dr Bachan said it was strictly in accordance with traditional practice, wherein the immersion of ashes of an unmarried girl could be effected on the cremation day to ward off any bad omens and spirits. Under Sikh tenets you can even immerse the ashes in water just after the cremation. So there is nothing wrong in it, said Dr Bachan.
The fervent inquiries by
scribes and rushing of some of them to the
spot took off soon after phone calls started
pouring in different newspaper offices in the after noon
that one of security guards of Bibi Jagir Kaur had been
killed by residents of Begowal, her ancestral
village. After getting wind of the incident
reporters of different dailies were on the job to confirm
the news from police officials as well as
their colleagues. But their all of their about four hour
long efforts proved to be nothing but a dud
when at the end of the day they found that no such
incident had taken place and all they had got was a
rumour, which had been spread mischievously
according to SGPC officials, by those who were against
Bibi Jagir Kaur.
Big hike in college fees in
AMRITSAR, April 22 The Punjab Government, which has been facing an acute financial crunch, may increase fee of graduation level up to five times from the next academic year with a view to raise the standard of higher education.
This was disclosed by Master Mohan Lal, Minister Higher Education while talking to TNS here today. He admitted that the financial crunch had had an adverse impact on the standard of higher education and in the wake of globalisation, it was a dire need to raise the standard of education.
To materialise the ambitious programmes for higher education, the state government needed more than Rs 200 crore. However, the state had only Rs 13 crore for this purpose.
Giving details of the proposed fee structure, Master Mohan Lal said that the admission fee for BA part one would be raised from Rs 25 to Rs 250 per student and tuition fee would be enhanced from Rs 25 to Rs 125. He said the state government had not raised the fee structure since 1986, which had led to a financial crunch in colleges. He said more money was required to raise educational standards in the wake of higher pay scales of the college staff. He said to cope with the prevailing financial crunch, the state government had urged the Centre to earmark more funds for education. He said the state would collect about Rs 20 crore from the proposed enhancement of fee structure.
Master Mohan Lal said that the state would endeavour to make higher education vocation-oriented and vocational courses would be made compulsory subjects at the graduation level. To meet the growing demand of technocrats, Master Mohan Lal said there was a need to open more technical universities.
To bring about necessary changes in higher education a high-level committee, headed by Vice-Chancellor Panjab University had been constituted. This committee would submit its report within a month.
To a question, Master Mohan Lal said that the newly opened government college (for boys) here would continue to impart education. He said he had directed the Education Secretary to submit a detailed report about the problems being faced by colleges.
Guru Nanak Dev
University had recommended closure of colleges which
failed to fulfil the required conditions. Master Mohan
Lal, however, said that despite dismal financial
conditions, the state government was committed to stick
to the 95 per cent grant-in-aid in privately-managed
colleges. It would also implement the pension and
gratuity scheme in these colleges. Replying a question,
Master Mohan Lal, however, refused to fix the date for
granting pension and gratuity to the staff of privately
managed colleges. He, however, said that a meeting
between the chief-secretary and leaders of the teachers
of private colleges would be fixed shortly to take a
final decision on this issue.
Lok Bhalai Manch to gherao
AMRITSAR, April 22 The Lok Bhalai Manch (LBM) of Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia has announced that it would gherao Prime Minister,Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee at his official residence at New Delhi, if the central government decided to include Udham Singh Nagar in the proposed state of Uttranchal Pradesh.
Addressing a press conference, here today, Mr Ramoowalia said that Mr Parkash Singh Badal had no right to continue as Chief Minister and President Shiromani Akali Dal as he had stabbed the residents of Udham Singh Nagar in the back. Despite his tall promises, Mr Badal had sided with the Bhartiya Janata Party, and sold his own 500 acre farm in Udham Singh Nagar as he knew the UP would be included in Uttranchal. Mr Badal who was a member of the three member panel on Udham Singh Nagar had failed to get the other members to hold even a single formal meeting so far.
Lashing at the
leadership of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, Mr
Ramoowalia alleged that they too were hand in
glove with Mr Badal and had failed to play a
constructive role as the opposition in Punjab. The PPCC
too had failed to come to the rescue of the residents of
Udham Singh Nagar, he said adding if Mr Badal was indeed
sincere towards his promises to the residents of Udham
Singh Nagar, he should immediately withdraw support to
the BJP-led coalition and withdraw the Akali minister
from the Union Cabinet.
Suspension of Sarpanch kicks up row
PATIALA, April 22 The suspension of Mr Randhir Singh Rakhra from the post of Sarpanch of Rakhra village in this district has kicked up a row with Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra, General Secretary, SHSAD, alleging here today that the SAD Government was victimising leaders of parties opposing the Government.
Mr Randhir Singh Rakhra was in his second term as Sarpanch. On April 17, vide orders by the Deputy Director, Panchayats, the sarpanch was suspended under the Punjab Panchayati Raj Act, 1994, Section 20. The orders said according to an inquiry it was proved that the sarpanch had embezzled money meant for village development. A press note signed by Mr Ghamand Singh, a former sarpanch, said due to misappropriation of funds, the development work in the village had been seriously affected.
Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra said the Sarpanch was being falsely implicated as he was a prominent leader of the SHSAD, led by Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra. He claimed that the suspension was not only based on a biased and partial inquiry but it was also undemocratic of the Government. Presenting six panchayat members of the village, Mr Chandumajra said the whole panchayat and the village was in support of the suspended sarpanch.
Showing documents, Mr Chandumajra said the Government inquiry claimed that there was embezzlement of Rs 6.76 lakh, while the grant received was only Rs 6.52 lakh. He added that the allegation of selling 135 acres of panchayat land was also baseless as the records showed half of this land was with Rakhra sugar mill.
Mr Chandumajra alleged
that the SAD-BJP Government had stooped low to target
opposition parties by targeting their men in such a
manner. He said the party had decided to knock the doors
of the High Court, besides starting a protest movement to
expose the Government.
President urged to reject Bill
PATIALA, April 22 Mr Sant Ram Singla, Vice-President of the PPCC, today appealed to the President, Mr K.R. Narayanan, to reject the UP Regulation of Religious Buildings and Places Bill. Mr Singla said this Bill was an attempt to destroy the secular fabric of the country and was against the spirit of the Indian Constitution.
Mr Singla also said such bills were a preamble to the hidden agenda of the RSS. He said the Congress had always stood for a secular India, wherein minorities, the poor, the downtrodden, the Scheduled Castes and the Backward Classes had an equal opportunity to grow and play their role in nation building.
He said ever since the NDA government had taken over, an effort was being made to saffronise the Indian polity and to promote the hidden agenda of the RSS. He said efforts to rewrite the Indian history, changing of text books, attacks on Christian community and a panel to review the Constitution of India were some examples.
Daakiyan dak laayi the only
postwoman of North
PATIALA, April 22 Dakiya daak laaya so goes a popular number. But in Beat -19 of the citys Postal Department, it is the unusual daakiyan dak laayi as the lone female postman of the state and probably of the northern region cycles from door to door, delivering letters.
While the entry of females in many male bastions is a recent phenomenon, Mrs Bharawanwali is one of plunge early on.
While her female colleagues preferred the comfortable environment of the few exceptions who took the an office duty, this woman took the daring step of opting for field duty 10 years ago.
A chance meeting with her at the Head Post Office here today revealed the unique persona of the brave woman. Sifting through piles of letters, she seemed completely at ease with her achievement. Whats so unusual? Women have ventured into space and I have only broken the male dominated area of delivering letters, she says in modesty.
Explaining her unusual name she reveals that she was named Bharawanwali as she had five brother unlike other girls in her Lohsimili village, near Ghanaur town. Though later she had six sisters, the honour remained.
Driven by family circumstances and the urge to be on her own, Mrs Bharawanwali enrolled herself as extra department agent a daily wage worker in the village Post Office to support her studies. After passing the matric exam, she got the post of a branch postmaster, in 1977 and she was promoted to the cadre of a postman. Till 1990, she worked on the counter in the office, but then the job demanded her taking up the field duty. I agreed immediately, she remembers. Initially there was some opposition within her family, but her husband who is in the Army egged her on to accept the challenge.
Reminiscing her first experiences, she said people were shocked to see a postwoman standing at their door step. They still do, she said. Women in her beat area were impressed by her courage to move about in the streets in all kinds of weather. I am quoted as an example by the young girls of the area, she adds proudly. A mother of a boy and girl, she has never faced any adjustment problem in her duty or work. The day begins early. I prepare food for the children and do other household chores. Around 10.30, it is time to collect the post and then distribute it in her beat around the Bus-Stand and Lahori Gate.
The postwoman is aware of her being the only postwoman of the state and claims she is the only one in the northern region also. Mr Ramnath, Assistant Post Master (deliver), seconds her. As per my knowledge, there are post women only in Kerala besides her in the country. She is a source of encouragement to her male colleagues as well, when she continues the hard job in spite of all odds.
Mrs Bharawanwali said
opting for such a job was not smooth but her urge to be
different from other woman kept her going on. She said if
there was a policy of some special allowances for women
then more females would be attracted to the job.
Panchayat land to be cleared of
GURDASPUR, April 22 An ambitious plan to generate resources for the development of panchayats has been launched. Mr Nirmal Singh Kahlon, Minister for Rural Development and Panchayats, while talking to newsman at Dera Baba Nanak, 35 km from here, today said under the plan the lease rate per acre of panchayat, panchayat samiti and zila parishad land was being raised from Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000 per acre per year. The step will raise an additional revenue of Rs 15 crore during the current year.
Mr Kahlon said proceedings to clear encroachments from 17,000 acres of panchayat lands have been launched. As much as 9,000 acres of encroached land is likely to be cleared in the near future and proceedings in this regard are at the final stage. The remaining 8,000 acres will also be cleared of encroachments during the current year.
Mr Kahlon said a committee had identified the land which could not be put to profitable use. It would be sold in an open auction and was likely to raise Rs 100 crore.
The funds thus raised would be utilised to construct shopping complexes, building of offices, for rent and construction of banks.
Mr Kahlon said the process of holding elections for panchayat samitis and zila parishads had been set in motion and a notification in this regard would be issued on May 8.
Plan to end water shortage
LUDHIANA, April 22 There will no longer be shortage of water in more than 80 per cent area of the city by year end as the ongoing Rs 33.52 crore water supply project was likely to be completed by then, said Mr Apinder Singh Grewal, Mayor, Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, here today.
Talking to The Tribune, Mr Grewal said that the work was in progress to lay 443-km-long water supply pipeline network, install 65 new tubewells and construct 70 overhead service reservoirs, which will ease the supply of water to a great extent. He said that earlier the city had 70 tubewells. Now the number of tubewells has gone to 210 with 10 more awaiting power connection.
In view of the poor quality of citys ground water, Mr Grewal said that there was no need to worry about it as the water supplied by the corporation was being pumped out from beyond the first aquifer (i.e. deeper than 100 feet) which is quite safe for human use. More so, because the water supplied by the corporation was chlorinated too. He said that another Rs 20 crore project was on the anvil, the completion of which would make safe drinking water assessable to almost 95 per cent population of the city. Mr Grewal further said that the efforts were afoot with the help of several recharging wells, harvesting pits and injection wells made in different parts of city, but they were not enough. Therefore, he said that the people must use the water very wisely and sparingly as its indiscriminate wastage would only aggravate the situation. The byelaws too were being amended to make the provision of injection wells mandatory in all the new constructions, said Mr Grewal.
Regarding sewerage problem, he said that a 150.12 crore sewerage project was on the anvil for which 70 per cent resources have been arranged from HUDCO as a loan for 15 years at 14 per cent and the corporation shall contribute 30 per cent of the cost from its own resources.
As regards the water
pollution owing to Budha Nullah, Mr Grewal said that
three treatment plants were coming up one each at
Jamalpur Bhattian and Ballonke which will treat the
sewage of the city before it was thrown into the river
SPCA project to pound stray
BATHINDA: The society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) has prepared a Rs 13-crore project for checking the roaming of animals particularly cows, on public roads in this district by setting up a big gaushala (cow shelter) at Gobindpura village.
Under this project, the SPCA proposes to construct sheds for 6000 stray cows identified in this district and to provide them medical care and clean fodder. Veterinary doctors would also be appointed for round-the-clock care.
At present, the 21 gaushalas in the district have insufficient space to accommodate all the strays roaming in the district. The district administration is motivating the gram panchayats to set up shelters to accommodate such strays.
The project, envisages a breeding centre along with the gaushala so that local cows could be used for producing milch cattle after cross-breeding with improved species.
Over the past few years, stray cows in this district have become a major problem for residents, particularly for farmers and road-users. Many lives have been lost in road accidents caused by the stray cows on major as well as link roads.
Hardly a day passes when there is no report of an accident caused by stray animals in the city. Apart from cows, the population of stray dogs, and is also high in the district.
Sources said most of the owners of the cows used to transport them to nearby cities from their respective towns. In this way the population of stray animals was increasing day by day.
Apart from accidents, the stray cows have also acquired the dimension of being the biggest enemy of farmers as these along with bulls have been ravaging their crops. Farmers residing in villages located near towns have been finding it difficult to save their crops.
In rural areas, farmers have constituted village-level committees and members of the committees man nakas laid at all entry points of the village turn by while the fields are being protected by their respective owners.
Mr Jaspal Singh, Deputy Commissioner, said out of Rs 13 crore, the Central Government has agreed to give Rs 25 lakh initially. He added that he had asked all the sub-divisional officers to identify those villages where the panchayats could give land free of cost to set up gaushalas.
Rai Sikhs seek SC rights
FEROZEPORE, April 22 The All-India Rai Sikh Mahtam and Sirkiband Welfare Association president, Mr Balwant Singh, in an appeal to the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, has urged that the Rai Sikhs should not be deprived of the rights of the Scheduled Caste.
In a statement issued here today, he said that administrative officers must be directed to continue issuing SC certificates to the Sirkibands. He added that before Independence, the Rai Sikhs were known as Mahtam and Sirkiband. In 1952, the Rai Sikhs were included in the SC list of Punjab in the name of Sirkiband by the Centre.
He said the Punjab Government vide its letter dated April 15, 1994, had clarified that the Rai Sikhs, the Mahtams and the Sirkibands were the same caste.
Mr Balwant Singh said even then if an applicant wanted to get a caste certificate in the name of Rai Sikh, he might be issued BC certificate and if one wanted to get certificate in the name of Sirkiband, he might be issued SC certificate.
He said cobblers, weavers and rahgars were included in the BC list but, cobbler in the name of chamar and weaver in the name of julaha used to get SC certificates.
YC men protest against
BATHINDA, April 22 Hundreds of activists of the city Youth Congress led by its leaders yesterday took out a march in the town in protest against the rising prices of essential commodities in the country.
Mr Bhagat Singh Dhaliwal, President, DCC (I), Mr Anil Bhola, President, local unit of the Congress and Mr Kewal Krishan Aggarwal and Mr Krishan Kumar Sharma both general secretaries, convened the meeting of workers before the protest march.
The Congress leaders
said the time had come when every one would have to fight
against the anti-poor policies of the BJP led coalition
government at the Centre. They added that the Congress
would make every sacrifice for ensuring the arrest of
price rise and to get a dignified life for the poor
section of the society.
Arhtiya robbed of Rs 2 lakh
PATIALA, April 22 In a daylight robbery, two armed youths snatched about Rs 2 lakh from an arhtiya (commission agent) from near grain market here this morning.
Mr Ishwar Dass was returning from a bank when two youths, who were following him, stopped him in a deserted corner of road and demanded money at gun-point.
Escapees planned to free Pak
BARNALA, April 22 Three criminals Ajit Singh, Makhan Singh and Tarsem Singh who escaped from police custody near a dhaba near Dhanaula, about 12 km from here, on Thursday evening had a plan of liberating Aslam Khan, a Pakistani lodged in the central jail, Patiala, on charges of bringing fake currency from Pakistan to India.
According to sources here, Ajit Singh who was arrested here on Thursday night while making a phone call at a local STD-PCO near local railway station revealed this ultimate gameplan of escapees from police custody during thorough interrogation.
GCG students sit on fast
PATIALA, April 22 The issue of detaining roll numbers of 17 undergraduate students of the Government College for Girls here due to shortage of lectures took a new turn when the affected students sat on a day-long fast on the college premises here today.
The students dispersed in the evening when the police was called in.
The strikers were earlier not allowing the Principal, Mrs Narinder Java, to leave the college. No force was used as the strikers accepted the requests made by the police.
Nancy Ghuman, spokeswoman of the striking girls, said the college authorities were victimising them by detaining their roll numbers, citing shortage of lectures. She said the students had genuine problems and they had furnished proof. Still their one year was being wasted. She also alleged that teachers had tried to use force to remove the girls sitting on fast.
The principal, Mrs Narinder Java, however, justified the decision to withhold the roll number. She said the college had nothing personal against any student and the norms set by the university were being followed. She said it was strange that some girls had given medical certificates to justify their lecture shortage in a subject, while the same ill girl had full attendance in other subjects.
Raise allocation for
AMRITSAR, April 22 The All-India Federation of University and College Teachers Organisation have urged the government to raise allocation on education from present 3.4 per cent to 6 per cent of the gross national product. The national secretary of AIFUCTO, Dr V.K. Tewari, while talking to pressmen here yesterday said the funds for education were dismally low and far below the national commitment.
Dr Tewari said the federation would oppose the move of the Central Government to allow foreign universities to establish its centres in India. He urged the government to withdraw the private universities Bill which had been pending before Parliament since 1995.
He said the government should not overlook the target fixed under the national policy of education of 1968 and 1986 which required the evolution of a funding university system. He regretted that most of the recommendations of the programme remained unimplemented. He sought more funds from the present 8 per cent of the GNP for the university and research system.
The organisation has taken a serious view of the Dr Amrik Singh Committee report which was set up to review the working of the University Grants Commission. He said the report of the committee should be made public.
Dr Tewari said if the Punjab Government decide to scrap the 95 per cent grant-in-aid to non-government colleges. The teaching community and students would oppose the move.
Dr Tewari said the
Punjab Government had failed to establish a state council
for higher education under the direction of the UGC. He
suggested the government must have regular interaction
with the teaching community for formulating policies.
Report card system in govt
BATHINDA, April 22 The Education Minister of Punjab, Mr Tota Singh, said here today that report card system would be introduced in all government schools shortly.
Addressing a function organised at Mehraj village in this district, he said that with the introduction of report card system, the parents would now be able to know the marks obtained by their wards in all examinations. Apart from it, they would also be able to get information regarding the behaviour and attendance of their wards in the school.
He added that to create better coordination among teachers and parents, the schools heads would organise regular meetings with the parents.
The Minister said that directorate for elementary education would start functioning from May at Chandigarh. About 2,400 middle standard and 14,000 primary schools would be brought under the elementary education directorate.
Mr Tota Singh made it clear that before starting the transfer process in the department, the vacancies of head teachers, centre head teachers and lecturers in different schools would be filled by carrying out large scale promotions. He added that teachers in each school would be posted according to strength of the students. He said that from now on the schools would be upgraded by taking strength of students and type of building into consideration.
He pointed out that
Punjab Education Department had decided to transfer those
teachers into rural schools who had completed 15 years of
service in urban areas. He added that transfers of such
teachers would be done from June 1 to 30.
Move to set up mills opposed
CHANDIGARH, April 22 The Punjab State Cooperative Markfed Employees Union has strongly opposed the setting up of six new rice mills by Markfed due to the various reasons.
After discussing the issue at its meeting, the union headed by Mr Ranjit Goyal said here today that Markfed had set up four rice mills of the capacity of 4 tonnes per hour in 1980 at Rajpura, Nawanshahr, Machhiwara and Baghapurana. All were either running in loss or showing profit by debiting major expenditure to the head office.
Mr Goyal said not only the rice mills but almost all Markfeds two dozen plants were in the red except one pesticide unit at SAS Nagar. In this light of these there was no need for setting up new rice mills.
Giving the background, he said Markfed had been toying with the idea of setting up new mills since 1980. But the proposals prepared in this connection were kept in abeyance because of non-viability and milling capacity in Punjab. The project report was prepared by Markfed staff and appraisal was done by the Punjab Financial Corporation which had reached the conclusion that mills can be technically and economically viable only if the capacity utilisation was 90 per cent and the cost of machinery did not exceed Rs 60 lakh.
Global tenders were floated in 1998 for setting up four rice mills, but the then Managing Director clearly passed orders that it will not be in the interest of Markfed to get the paddy milled by private parties as there were more losses when the milling was done by Markfed by itself. In other words, the proposal was shelved by him.
However, again the same proposal has been revived and the tenders which were floated in 1998 have been reprocessed and the order had been placed for purchasing machinery from a Korean firm at a cost of Rs 2.43 crore per plant while an Indian company had made an offer to provide the machinery for Rs 90 lakh. A team of Markfed officials had visited Korea recently and the agreement was signed to buy machinery for six plants. The union had alleged that there was no technical expert in the team which visited Korea.
It further said while
Markfed was keen to lease out existing rice mills to
avoid losses and already advertisements were floated in
print media for this purpose, on the other hand it was
going ahead to install new mills. The union said that at
a meeting of the Board of Directors of Markfed where the
decision to set up new mills was taken, most of the
Directors belonging to the Congress did not turn up.
Chaheru mill dispute settled
PHAGWARA, April 22 The Chaheru bone mill dispute was settled amicably today following an apology by workers leader Chanchal Singh and his son Ajit Singh in presence of Mr Rohit Khana, Director, of the mill and Mr B.D. Sharma, General Manager, and Mr Lakhwinder Singh, SHO, Sadar police station.
Chanchal Singh also resigned from the mill. The dispute was resolved on the intervention of the SHO. The workers also withdrew their strike call given today.
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