|Thursday, May 25, 2000,
smuggling goes on unchecked
to speed up airport revamp
of education merged
Punjab to seek funds for bundhs on
on Inter-State Council panel
Bhattal differ again
|Cong in for more infighting
PATIALA, May 24 The Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) may be in for more infighting with a fresh front being opened against senior leaders and Lok Sabha member Jagmeet Singh Brar with the party dissolving its kisan cell headed by Mr Harinderpal Singh Mann, a loyalist of Mr Brar.
CPI threatens agitation
flays MLA on press coverage issue
up IT institute in Punjab: Jacob
function at Akal Takht
, chaubaras of historical gurdwara being demolished
nodal agency for two districts
victim denied aid
JEs hold dharna
on deputation to be sent back
killed, 13 hurt in bus mishap
experiment in Sanskrit theatre
course in English
told to repair college premises
lakh tax evasion detected
arrears on May 27
Liquor smuggling goes on
LUDHIANA, May 24 Hoopla about the smashing of the old liquor syndicate seemed to be a flash in the pan. The syndicate allegedly is still calling the shots through behind-the-scene activities.
Rampant sale and supply of illicit liquor in areas under the control of new liquor contractors, allegedly at the behest of the members of the syndicate, is causing huge losses to the new licences, who have been unable to make full payments of the monthly licence fee.
Information gathered by The Tribune from the Excise and Taxation Department here today revealed that while the monthly licence fee for the contractors has been fixed at 12.22 crore, but licencees have paid the licence fee for April only recently and that, too. to the extent of over Rs 8 crore.
This, in spite of the fact that the auction of liquor shops in the city had got the state government a revenue of Rs 125.70 crore, with an increase of 10.8 per cent compared to a meagre 2.38 per cent increase in revenue for the rest of the state.
Investigations revealed that illicit liquor was being sold in Dhonka mohalla, Dhakka colony, Field Ganj, Aslam Ganj, Abdullahpur Basti and colonies along both sides of the Railway lines. These colonies, presently, are under the control of the new liquor contractors, who had taken nine of the 12 groups in the city.
It is also learnt that the liquor sold is done at extremely low prices. While price of a bottle of country-made liquor is fixed at Rs 80, it is available from liquor smugglers at the rate of Rs 60 per bottle. Even the prices of Indian-made Foreign Liquor has been reduced by these smugglers to Rs 100 per bottle as compared to the set price of Rs 150 per bottle.
These smugglers also prefer to sell more cases of liquor (both country-made and IMFL) instead of single bottles. Sources in the Excise and Taxation Department reveal that a case of country-made liquor which cost Rs 960 is available for anything between Rs 500 to Rs 600 and a case of IMFL costing Rs 1500 is available for Rs 1100 from these smugglers.
The new liquor contractors allege a partisan role on part of the police in trying to nab these smugglers, allegedly because of pressure from political bigwigs, whose interests were hit with the syndicate not being able to get more than two groups. The syndicate, it may be noted, is led by a kin of an Akali minister.
It is reliably learnt that the new liquor contractors have repeatedly caught these smugglers selling liquor in their areas and despite the insistence of the Excise Department, the police allegedly has refused to book the culprits and has also not seized the liquor.
Highly-placed sources in the Excise and Taxation Department, on condition of anonymity, also said that with the connivance of the members of the old liquor syndicate were promoting and favouring these smugglers. Alleged Mr Jasbir Singh of M/s Jasbir Singh Jagdish Singh and Company and president of an association of these new liquor contractors. The police itself does not make any efforts to catch these smugglers and even if we catch them, they are not booked. Last night, we caught a liquor smuggler, Bapu, in the the Bachittar Nagar area and 17 bottles of liquor was seized for him. He was also handed over to the police, but I learnt that after an Akali Minister intervened he was let off the hook.
However, in spite of repeated attempts to contact the SSP, Mr Kuldeep Singh, he was not available for comment.
It is learnt that even as the decision to set up Excise Police force is being finalised. The Excise Department here has only one head constable and three constables to check sale of illicit liquor under its jurisdiction. A highly-placed Excise official also alleged that the police was not cooperating with them in this regard. Several times, we have nabbed these smugglers, but due to political pressure, the police refuses to book them under Excise Act, he alleged.
Sources also point out the trouble for the new contractors began right from the beginning. The contractors were reportedly threatened with physical assault before the auction of vends. Later, they were not given shops for opening vends and when these contractors tried to set up kiosks in the city, the Municipal Corporation selectively demolished these kiosks. Even if these were located on private land.
Panel to speed up airport
RAJASANSI (Amritsar), May 24 Sri Guru Ramdas International airport here at Amritsar will be beautified and modernised, equipped with latest international status facilities and infrastructure and that, too, will be completed in minimum time to cope with the increasing rush of air passengers.
Disclosing this, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal after presiding over a high-level meeting of senior officials, Airport Authority of India officials local airport officials, private foreign airlines carriers and officials from different departments mainly the security, immigration, customs, intelligence, PWD (B and R), Irrigation and PUDA.
Punjab Minister for Civil Aviation, Raja Narinder Singh, Mr Tarlochan Singh Tur, MP, Mr Rajmohinder Singh Majitha, MP, Punjab Secretaries of Civil Aviation, R.P.S. Pawar and of Irrigation, Bikramjit Singh, Mrs Vini Mahajan, Managing Director, Punjab Tourism Development Corporation, the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Narinderjit Singh, Mr BS Mulekar, airport Director especially attended the meeting which reviewed all renovation plans and took on-the-spot decisions with directions from the Chief Minister to complete the works in very shortest possible time.
Mr Badal set up a three-member coordination committee with the Deputy Commissioner to monitor and coordinate all arrangements to be undertaken regarding the modernisation and upgrading of the existing infrastructure to renovate the airport to provide better, improved and international level facilities to the passengers. The airport Director and the MD Punjab Tourism will be other members of the committee.
The Chief Minister said that the government already had placed Rs one crore at the disposal of the local committee for this purpose and added that there would be no paucity of funds at any level and the officials concerned must work hard to achieve the desired goals in a time-bound manner.
Mr Badal said that he would meet the Union Minister for Civil Aviation and other airport authority officials in New Delhi on May 26 to discuss airport-related matters with a view streamlining the renovation works.
The AAI officials told the meeting that they had a plan to instal a number of air-conditioners, false ceilings and other works at a cost of Rs 63 lakh but expressed doubts about some delay due to necessary formalities to be adopted. But the Chief Minister was quick to respond that the Punjab government did not want any delay and announced that the required amount will reach them within three days as a temporary arrangement and the AAI officials promised to reimburse it to the Punjab government in due course.
The meeting also decided to build two fabricated waiting halls outside the airport building for the benefit of the passengers. The department of PWD (B and R) will complete this task. Temporary tentage will also be provided. Domestic and international arrival/departure and the security check points will be provided with air-conditioners and other infrastructure to match international standards. The immigration portion will also be upgraded. Bathrooms and toilets improved with better facilities. It was also felt at the meeting that some private sectors should come forward to build a five star hotel near the airport to meet emergency situations for passengers. The big corporate houses like Markfed, Milkfed will be prompted to sponsor for the beautification and electrification of the airport as well as to sell their product. An island-like welcome fountains and chowks will be put up on the Amritsar-Rajasansi road with lighted sign-boards to serve as traffic signals for outside passengers to reach the airport.
Punjab Tourism Managing Director, Mrs Vini Mahajan assured that the finest AC tourist coaches would be put in service to connect the airport with the important cities of Punjab. She added that transport facilities would be upgraded and pre-paid taxi service will be provided for the passengers. The bus service will start immediately.
The airport officials
told the meeting that immigration counters had been
increased from two to six and electronics information
boards for the arrival/departure of flights will be put
up very soon. They also informed that checking by the
security officials near the plane has been stopped with
immediate effect to save the passengers from harassment.
The conveyor belts are also being introduced very soon.
They disclosed that the chairman of the Airport Authority
of India (AAI) and the Union Secretary for Civil Aviation
will visit Amritsar next month to oversee all
Directorates of education merged
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Directorate of Elementary Education (DEE) will start functioning next month.The required process for setting up this directorate has been completed. The Directorate of Primary Education will be merged in the Directorate of the Elementary Education.
The setting up of the DEE for the State Government has become mandatory in the light of national education policy envisaging education up to middle level as fundamental right of all children up to the age of 14 years. The Central Government has made a provision that in future the Budget allocation to the States would be for elementary education while it was earlier for primary education.
There are about 25 lakh students in schools functioning under the supervision of the Directorate of Primary Education. The number of primary schools is near 13,000.
Mr Tota Singh, Punjab Education Minister, said that he was hopeful that the DEE would start functioning by the end of the next month. As schools would be closed for summer vacation from June 1 to June 30, he said that entire process of postings and transfers would be completed during this month.
There are 2392 middle schools in the state and each has six teachers and one attendent though the average number of students in the whole state varies between 40 and 60 per school. And in primary schools, over 7000 posts are vacant. With the merger of primary schools with middle schools, teaching staff available in middle section will become available for primary section, Mr Tota Singh said.
Though some teacher associations are opposing this move, but Mr Tota Singh said that the number of posts of central head teacher (heads of primary schools) would be maintained, he added. There was a lot of propaganda against the setting up of the DEE, but all this was baseless. In fact, he said that there would be increase in the posts of central head teachers following merger.
There is surplus staff in high schools especially in science, mathematics, sports and social studies subjects. This staff would be adjusted in schools to be upgraded by the state government in due course.
With the computerisation of records of all schools in Ropar district, it has been found that a large number of schools are over-staffed in the Kharar belt. For instance as per number of students, the strength of teaching staff in Chunni Kalan should be only 18, but at present 30 teachers are posted there. Same is true in case of large number of other schools in this belt. Informed sources said that for justifying the staff strength, certain schools have been providing wrong information to the authorities concerned. However, computerisation of records have set the things right.
Quizzed in this connection, Mr Tota Singh said that he had got the information that about 100 teachers were surplus in SAS Nagar and Kharar schools. Unfortunately teachers are not prepared to serve in schools located in remote areas, he added. Records of all schools in all districts would be computerised to set the things right.
computerisation as subject in government schools,
negotiations were going on with private companies. The
lowest rate quoted by one company is Rs 71 per students
for imparting computer education.
Punjab to seek funds for bundhs
CHANDIGARH , May 24 The river diversion by Pakistan towards India causes damage to defence installations, farms and other structures on this side of the international border.
Besides the Ravi several other seasonal rivulets which get flooded during monsoon, Pakistan makes such diversion as to make the water rush towards India. Given the topography of the Ravi bed it erodes Dhusi bundh and other river training works, including spurs and studs on the Indian side.
To counter this mischief, the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, will lead a deputation of ministers and MLAs hailing from the three border districts Gurdaspur, Amritsar and Ferozepore, to meet the Union Home Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, in New Delhi on May 26. The major demand of the deputation will be to seek funds to counter the diversions.
Despite sanction of Rs 298.40 lakh the Union Home Ministry had not released funds for flood protection. In fact in consultations with the BSF a major project, worth Rs 521.33 lakh, has also been submitted to New Delhi for execution in the border belt. Even that money is blocked.
Bridges costing Rs 525.55 lakh have also been approved but money has not been actually released. Therefore, the deputation will demand a sum of at least Rs 1,345.28 lakh for flood protection in the border districts .
According to a press note issued on the subject, the deputation will also focus on problems and requirements of the people living close to the border with Pakistan.
In fact a memorandum was to be presented to Mr Advani in Chandigarh on May 7. Since he did not turn up owing to inclement weather and other engagements , the same could not be done.The proposed visit to him now will highlight the following issues :
Central funds be allocated under the Border Area Development Scheme corresponding to the sensitivity of the border;
Compensation to farmers for farms across the fence be made a regular scheme, the Planning Commission did make available Rs 8 crore just for one year;
Border districts need industrial development and the Centre must take initiative and the border roads need attention. A sum of Rs 180.98 crore is required for the upkeep of the road net-work ;
Identity cards be issued to other members of the family, besides the head of the family, entry-exit be further facilitated and number of gates increased;
Night curfew hours be decreased to enable farmers work a little longer;
Toilets are required to be constructed for women in villages; and
Badal on Inter-State Council
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, has been nominated as one of the members of a sub-committee of the standing committee of the Inter-State Council which has been reconstituted as per recommendations of the Sarkaria Commission on the Centre-State relations.
In pursuance of the decision taken by the standing committee at its meeting on December 9, 1998, the sub-committee under the convenership of the Union Defence Minister was set up to discuss and reach a consensus regarding amendment in Article 356 of the Constitution.
The other members of this sub-committee are Mr N. Chandrababu Naidu, Mr Digvijay Singh, and Dr M. Karunanidhi, all Chief Ministers and Mr Ashim K. Dasgupta, Finance Minister ,West Bengal.
The reconstituted sub-committee will continue discussions regarding amendment in Article 356 of the Constitution and evolve consensus formats for consideration in the standing committee. The committee will also deliberate on Article 256, 257 and 365 of the Constitution in the light of recommendation of the Sarkaria Commission, says a press note.
Amarinder, Bhattal differ again
JALANDHAR, May 24 The love-hate relationship between the PPCC president, Captain Amarinder Singh, and former Chief Minister, Mrs Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, has taken a new turn with the latter fully backing the party MP Balbir Singhs stance against the readmission of some middle-rung party functionaries who had been expelled for their anti-party activities.Mr Balbir Singh, during his interaction with mediapersons here on May 19, said that he had taken up the issue with the party president Sonia Gandhi at New Delhi on May 17 and had expressed his objection to the readmission of some party functionaries, who opposed him during the Lok Sabha poll.
Four party functionaries, including Mr Prem Gupta and Mr Anil Datta, organising secretary of the PPCC, were expelled on February 16 after a decision of the Party Disciplinary Action Committee. While these two leaders stand expelled, two Ferozepore-based leaders were readmitted to the party.Mrs Bhattal, on May 13, at Circuit House here, stated that the process of reinstatement of Mr Datta and others was on. Captain Amarinder Singh, on the other hand, expressed surprise and said that he was not aware of any such move.
Cong in for more infighting
PATIALA, May 24 The Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) may be in for more infighting with a fresh front being opened against senior leaders and Lok Sabha member Jagmeet Singh Brar with the party dissolving its kisan cell headed by Mr Harinderpal Singh Mann, a loyalist of Mr Brar.
Mr Brar, barring criticism of the organisational failure of the party in the Nawanshahr elections, had by and large refrained from any dissident activity on the lines of former Chief Minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and her followers till now.
Mr Mann reacted to the dissolving of the cell on Monday by saying Mr Brar was the only alternative to the people against Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) chief and state Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal. He also made it clear that he would not take the dissolving of the cell lying down by saying he would meet the party General Secretary in-charge of Punjab, Mr Moti Lal Vora, besides party chief Sonia Gandhi to apprise them of the facts.
The Congress leader, who belongs to Samana alleged that a family member of PPCC Chief Amarminder Singh was being touted as a candidate for the Samana constituency. He alleged that though he had been working sincerely in the constituency, he had been perceived as a challenge and bundled out.
Earlier after the Adampur poll last year the kisan cell was also dissolved. Though it had been dissolved through a notice by then organising secretary Lakhwinder Kaur Garcha a new body had not been formed in its place. Sources said the body has been dissolved as Mr Mann was trying to hog the limelight on a similar green turbans to create a distinct identity. He was also accused of appointing Brar loyalists as presidents as the district level.
Sources said a new body had not been formed as Mr Jagmeet Brar has also approached the high command in this regard. However, Mr Mann could not function as the chief of the cell as the PPCC chief did not issue him any fresh letter. Now party office in charge Sant Ram Singla has issued a statement saying the kisan cell had been dissolved to streamline its functioning.
One month back Mr Jagmeet Brar had come to Patiala to attend a sant samagam organised by Mr Mann. Sources said this was not taken lightly by the PPCC loyalists as Mr Mann is one of the prospective candidate from the Samana assembly segment.
Mr Mann has started
working in the Samana assembly constituency for the past
two months or so. He also organised a function to lay the
foundation stone of a girls college in the area
which is likely to be built through donations from people
of the constituency. The function were organised in his
private capacity and not as a Congress leader. Sources
said this was being done by Mr Mann to build up his image
so that he could contest as an Independent if he did not
get the party ticket.
CPI threatens agitation
BATHINDA, May 24 The members of Parliament and senior CPI leader, Mr Bhan Singh Bhaura today said that his party would launch a statewide agitation against rampant corruption of ministers and other misdeeds of the SAD-BJP combine government of Punjab.
Addressing a press conference here today, he added that rallies would be held at district-level and memorandum against the misdeeds of the Punjab government would be submitted to district magistrates. He added that like-minded parties could also be invited for joining the partys agitation.
He alleged that on one hand, scandals of ruling politicians were coming to light, on the other hand, the Punjab Chief Minister was trying his best to hush up all such cases.
He pointed out that Mr Badal had been trying to hush up the irrigation scandal, case relating to the suicide committed by Vaid Karam Singh in the private house of Agriculture Minister, Gurdev Singh Badal, case relating to the mysterious death of Harpreet Kaur, daughter of SGPC chief, Bibi Jagir Kaur and scandal of hundred of crores in the Drainage Department.
While terming the inquiries into these matters by the state agencies as joke, he said that a CBI probe should be made into each and every bungling. He added that people had lost faith in the state agencies who had turned the puppets of the ruling politicians.
He pointed out that under the SAD-BJP rule in Punjab, the cases of atrocities on innocent people by the police had gone up. He added that even senior officials of the Punjab Police were found involved in the heinous crimes like rape.
He alleged that Mr Badal was telling a big lie regarding the status of Guru Gobind Singh Oil Refinery to be set up at Phulokhari village in this district. He added that so far the HPCL, the main player in the mega project could not find a suitable partner for signing the joint venture for executing the project. He said that if Mr Badal was serious about the oil refinery, he should press the Central Government for releasing the funds.
He added that Mr Badal after extending the facility of free electricity to one section of the society had been burdening the other sections of society with it.
Sodhi flays MLA on press
AMRITSAR, May 24 Intra-party differences in the BJP came to the fore with Mr Daya Singh Sodhi, chief of the state BJP, condemning party MLA Laxmi Kanta Chawla on the issue of the entry of the Press to cover the proceedings of the local municipal corporation here today.
Mr Sodhi took objections to the manner in which the Press was invited without any prior consensus on the issue.
Although he was not averse to the presence of the Press in the House enclosures during the proceedings.
The house meeting on last Friday saw unruly scenes when a majority of the sitting members and others, especially the Opposition, came out in favour of the Press to do on the spot reporting of the proceedings. A verbal dual followed between Ms Chawla and Mayor Subhash Sharma. The meeting was stalled and adjourned without the completion of the day's agenda.
Mr Sodhi said she could have shared and sorted out the matter with the state chief before going for a confrontation with the Mayor.
He accused Mr Dharamveer Sareen (Congress), the leader of he Opposition, of politicising the issue.
Set up IT institute in Punjab:
LUDHIANA, May 24 Punjab Governor, J.F.R. Jacob today stressed the need for creating awareness about information technology (IT) in the state.
Addressing the annual day function of the Ludhiana Management Club here today, the Governor said Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had also evinced keen interest in developing information technology in the state.
The Governor said Chandigarh would be developed as an IT destination and IT parks had already been planned for the City Beautiful. He also mooted the idea of setting up an institute of information technology in Chandigarh.
He regretted that Punjab did not have an institution like this. The Governor said he had suggested to the Punjab Government to set up such an institute in the state.
The Governor also expressed concern over the growing gap between the rich and the poor countries. He cautioned that this would lead to socio-economic pressures.
Earlier, the Governor presented the LMA annual awards to three entrepreneurs, who had achieved outstanding success in their respective fields. They included Mr Sunil Mital, the Chairman and Managing Director of Bharti Enterprises. He was presented LMA-Vardhman Award.
The LMA Dayanand Munjal award was presented to Mr Sean C Dexter, Director, Operations, Spice Telecom, the mobile service provider in Punjab and Chandigarh.
The LMA Trident Award
for young entrepreneur went to Raman Deep Singh Suri, the
proprietor of Raman Software, Ludhiana. Despite being
visually challenged (blind), he at the age of 29 has
already established software business.
Bluestar function at Akal Takht
AMRITSAR, May 24 The All-India Sikh Students, Federation (Badal) will not hold a separate function to observe the 16th anniversary of Operation Bluestar on June 6, but will participate in the function to be held by the SGPC at Akal Takht.The families of the victims of Bluestar will be honoured at this function.
The federation leaders, Mr Karnail Singh Pirmohammed and General Secretary, Mr Gurdeep Singh Najowal, in a joint statement urged the Union Home Minister, Mr Lal Krishan Advani, to review the cases of Sikh detainees languishing in Jodhpur and other jails for more than 16 years.Welcoming the announcement of Mr Advani, the two leaders said the Union Home Minister should take some firm steps in this direction.
Criticising the Congress
for anti-Sikh role the federation leaders were of the
view that Sikhs were branded separatists,
secessionists and terrorists by the Congress in
order to defame the Sikh community all over the world.
Many states in the country are facing the same problems
in which persons of all communities are involved, yet
nobody has ever branded them as Hindu
terrorists or Muslim terrorists, they
observed.The leaders blamed the Congress for raising the
controversy regarding the activities of the RSS in
respect of the Sikh religion.
Tohra appreciates disclosure
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Sarb-Hind Shiromani Akali Dal President, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, today described as appreciable the disclosure by the Union Defence Minister, Mr George Fernendes, on the articles belonging to the Sikh Reference Library in the Golden Temple, Amritsar.
Talking to newspersons the former SGPC President said that ever since Operation Bluestar he had been writing to the Centre expressing concern over the precious belongings which were untraceable but were of immense historic, religious and sentimental value to the Sikhs. Repeated enquiries drew no response from the then Congress government.
He congratulated Mr Fernandes and hoped the Prime Minister will also pay heed to a suit filed by him as SGPC President as well as in his individual capacity demanding Rs 1,000 crore damages for the irreparable loss suffered during Operation Bluestar.
The veteran Akali leader
said the Sikh Reference Library was a repository of rare
manuscripts and artefacts, including a 1942 copy of the
Rehat-Maryada (code of conduct for Sikhs) weighing nearly
40 kg, besides, hand-written manuscripts of hukamnamas
(edicts) issued by Guru Gobind Singh and Guru Hargobind.
Now that the truth is out, the Congress stands
politically marginalised, he added.
Deori , chaubaras of
historical gurdwara being demolished
BAHADURGARH (Patiala), May 24 The last vestiges of history are being destroyed in the historical gurdwara here which is revered due to its association with Guru Tegh Bahadur. A kar seva exercise of demolishing the deori (main entrance) of the gurdwara and pulling down six painted chaubaras built around it more than 200 years back by Maharaja Karam Singh of the Patiala royal house is on.
The main gurdwara has already been rebuilt by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC). Now the three-storey entrance which comprises of the main entrance as well as halls supported by pillars and four bungas is being pulled down to make way for a parikrama around the gurdwara. A modern gate to the gurdwara constructed last year is a little away from the gurdwara .
The six chaubaras, which surround the large modern building which has replaced the old small historical gurdwara, will also make way for the construction of a parikrama around the gurdwara. The entire exercise is being conducted to create space around it as well as modernise it, say kar sevaks.
Baba Diwan Singh, in charge of the kar seva locally which is being carried out by Baba Harbans Singh of Delhi, says the demolition is being done as the structures have outlived their utility and were caving in. However, an inspection of the site and discussions with the staff of the gurdwara, including granthis, reveals that this is not the case. The granthis said the gate could be easily repaired and the various chaubaras were still in good condition and only needed minor restoration work.
The demolition of the deori whose nearly two-feet thick walls are made of lime and mortar is a tough job.
The kar seva in charge was told by granthis to be careful with the windows carved in sandstone as also the extensively carved wooden doors. The gurdwara employees want these items to be reused.
Some people have expressed surprise at the SGPC giving permission for the demolition of the historical structures. Employees of the gurdwara as well as several followers of the faith did not want it. It is sheer madness, said an employee, adding that history was being demolished to make way for a concrete marble structure. Additional Deputy Commissioner R.S. Randhawa said the deori with its painted chambers was an example of the Sikh style of architecture.
Many people, who are pained at the kar seva want that the chaubaras circling the gurdwara should be saved. Punjabi University teacher Jasbir Singh Bhatia said the chaubaras must be saved from destruction at all cost as they were adorned with beautiful murals which were invaluable. The murals are mostly in flower patterns with birds. Mr Bhatia, who is doing research on Sikh paintings, said an immeasurable loss had been done by demolishing the old gurdwara at the site in 1986. Nothing of the old structure will remain if the deori and the chaubaras also are demolished, he added. Mr Bhatia has also written to the SGPC in this regard.
PUDA nodal agency for two
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Punjab Government has appointed the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) as the nodal agency for developing district administrative complex at Hoshiarpur and Patiala. A decision in this regard has been taken by the Chief Minister of Punjab.
A spokesman for PUDA said land measuring 5 acres belonging to Zila Parishad, Hoshiarpur, has been transferred to the Revenue Department for construction of the administrative complex. An additional area of two acres in the vicinity of the Zila Parishad land has also been acquired. A multi-storeyed administrative complex would be developed there at a cost of Rs 10 crore.
In case of Patiala an area of 15 acres of vacant government land outside the Central Jail on the Nabha road has been earmarked for administrative complex. The complex which would house the divisional offices, including those of the Divisional Commissioner and the DIG. It would cost around Rs 18 crore. A residential colony in the vicinity of the proposed complex would also be constructed.
Massacre victim denied aid
AMRITSAR, May 24 Mrs Vimla Dang, patron Punjab Istri Sabha, Mr Vijay Kapoor, senior vice-president, Nau Jawan Sabha Amritsar, and Mr Krishan Bajwa, leading activist Istri Sabha Amritsar, visited Mr Nanak Singh, the lone survivor of the Chatti Singhpora (J and K) massacre in Mata Kaulan Devi Hospital today. The family was getting ready to go back to Kashmir in a hired van.
A stenographer in the state Animal Husbandry department Mr Nanak Singh was shot at on March 20 in the worst ever carnage of a minority community by Kashmiri militants at Chatti Singhpora Anantnag district on March 20. Thirtyfour Sikhs were massacred Nanak Singh was also injured by bullets but escaped somehow. His 17-year-old son and five other male relatives were also killed.
Mr Nanak Singh was treated in Amritsar and underwent three operations. The Jammu and Kashmir State government gave Rs one lakh to the family of deceased, the SGPC gave another Rs 1.5 lakh. But the injured Nanak Singh got no aid for the government. His injuries were serious so he was removed to hospital in Amritsar in Mata Kaulan Devi and Karam Singh hospitals he was given rent free rooms but had to spend much on medicines. Mr Nanak Singh paid Rs 45000 for his hip replacement alone.
However, on behalf of the Punjab Istri Sabha Relief Trust, Mrs Vimla Dang offered Rs 3000/- to Mr Nanak Singh as a token of solidarity.
His wife Gurdip Kaur and her sister were in tears as Mr Nanak Singh was relating his woeful tale.
AMRITSAR, May 24 Hav Mukhtiar Singh of 22 Sikh who attained martyrdom while fighting insurgents in the Kupwara sector on Monday was cremated with full military honours at his native Dherdeo village near Baba Bakala today
Order to SSP
CHANDIGARH, May 23 Disposing of a petition for registering a case of kidnapping and wrongful confinement against three persons, Mr Justice A.S. Gill of the Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed Mansa Senior Superintendent of Police to consider the petitioners complaint and take necessary steps under the law in case any cognizable offence was made out.
In his petition, Sukhdev Singh of Mansa district had earlier alleged that his father Balbir Singh was beaten up without any reason after being forcibly taken away by respondents Basant Singh, Piara Singh and Jasvir Singh on April 15 while he was returning with old-age pension.He had added that the respondents also attacked ladies of the family, besides taking away household articles, including a colour television and gold ornaments, the next day after the petitioners father refused to compromise.
Claiming the issuance of threats by the three, he had further added that till date no action whatsoever had been taken against the culprits despite representations. Notice issued
The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday issued notice of motion to the State of Punjab and the Director-General of Police for July 13 on a petition by Jagraon Superintendent of Police, challenging the Punjab Governments orders withdrawing the benefits of military service on the ground that the same were not available to those who had joined Air Force service prior to the imposition of the emergency.Taking up the petition, Mr Justice R.S. Mongia and Mr Justice J.S. Narang, also stayed the revision till further directions in pursuance of the orders passed by the Punjab Government.
Counsel submitted that
the Punjab Government, instead of giving him entire
benefits, issued a circular withdrawing the benefit
granted to him earlier on the ground that those who had
joined the armed forces prior to the emergency were not
entitled to the same.
PSEB JEs hold dharna
PATIALA, May 24 On the call given by the Council of Junior Engineers PSEB, a massive dharna was held today in front of the all zonal headquarters by Junior engineers in support of their long-pending demands.
Mr Sukhdev Singh and Mr P.K. Alipuria, President and General Secretary, respectively, of the council, informed that Junior Engineers participated in large numbers in these dhanrnas at Amritsar, Jalandhar, Bhatinda, Ludhiana and Patiala. They said the new transfer policy was condemned by speakers.
The leaders criticised the management for delay in implementation of various demands.
The council warned that
the agitation would be further intensified if the board
management failed to settle the demands, including
scrapping of the transfer policy. The next line of action
would be decided in the apex body meeting, to be held on
May 25, they added.
Powermen raise demands
CHANDIGARH, May 24 A delegation of the Punjab State Electricity Employees Federation today met Mr Sikander Singh Maluka, Punjab Power Minister, and demanded that the employees not be transferred out of a subdivision before eight years, instead of the present five years.
They also demanded that more than 20 per cent employees in each category be shifted under the policy. Besides this, the limit of stay for transfer of employees out of a division should be considered after 18 years, instead of 15 years, and not more than 10 per cent employees should be shifted under this category.
In a statement, the
General Secretary of the federation, said employees
should be transferred out of their respective circles
either on the basis of complaints or their conduct. Those
who attended the meeting included Mr Surinder Singh,
President of the federation, Ms BS Sekhon, Mr ML Kapila,
Mr Manjit Singh Chahal, Mr Balwinder Singh and Mr Randhir
Doctors on deputation to be sent
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Punjab Government has decided to send back to their actual place of posting to all those doctors and nurses who are working on deputation at other places. Official sources said that there were about 150 doctors and a large number of nurses who were on deputation in various hospitals and dispensaries at places other than their actual posting.
The decision to cancel
the deputation has been taken at a high-level meeting
taken by the Punjab Chief Minister, sources said. It has
become a routine among doctors to get shifted on
deputation to hospitals located in cities, towns or near
such places while posts in remote areas are vacant.
Sources said that Mr Badal had told all concerned to fill
first vacant posts in focal points on priority.
Road traffic disrupted
JALANDHAR, May 24 Traffic on the Jalandhar-Nakodar road remained disrupted following a dharna by hundreds of residents of the Bhargo Camp locality who were demanding the arrest of the persons responsible for the attack on Mr Darshan Lal, president of Kabir Mandir management committee early this morning.
A group of eight to 10 armed persons reportedly attacked at about 12.30 p.m. today and injured him seriously with lethal weapons. He succumbed to his injuries at the Civil Hospital. But none of the accused, including Roshan Lal, who also claimed himself to be president of the temple management committee, was arrested by the police, leading residents to hold a protest dharna from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The residents led by local leaders Pawan Kumar Tinu and Subhash DC lifted the dharna when an SP and some Bahujan Samaj Party workers reached the spot and assured them that the assailants would be arrested soon.
The incident is being attributed to long standing rivalry between two groups of the temple management committee. A case regarding the dispute is pending in the court of an SDM.
3 killed, 13 hurt in bus mishap
HOSHIARPUR, May 24 (UNI) Three passengers were killed and 13 were injured when a private bus, in which they were travelling, dashed against a roadside tree near Randhawa sugar mill on the Hoshiarpur-Dasuya road today.
The police said that all injured had been admitted to the Civil Hospital, Dasuya.
JALANDHAR, May24 The district police claims to have busted a fake currency racket by arresting one of the accused and recovering fake currency notes totalling Rs 8,000 and a sophisticated printer from him.
1100 teachers promoted
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Punjab Education Department has promoted 1100 teachers as lecturers for teaching in 10 plus two schools. A spokesman for the department said that promotion orders had been sent to all lecturers individually and lists had been sent to district education officers concerned.
Successful experiment in Sanskrit
PATIALA, May 24 Patiala has appeared on the Sanskrit theatre map of the country with the conclusion of the states first-ever eight-show festival Theatre for Sanskrit Awareness here. It was organised by the Department of Languages of Punjab at Patiala in cooperation with the Union Government.
A powerful social satire, Ahimsa Parmo Dharma, staged at the festival was part of Sanskrit Year 2000 celebrations. It was an experimental and successful attempt in Sanskrit theatre by Pran and Sunita Sabharwal, artiste couple of the National Theatre Arts Society (NTAS) of Patiala.
The play has so far been staged at Patiala, Hoshiarpur, Sirhind, Faridkot, Malerkotla, Dinanagar, Amritsar, and Kartarpur. It has created awareness among the people about the greatness of this ancient language.
According to Dr M.L. Hasiza, Director Languages of Punjab, the play is an effective Sanskrit translation by Dr Shaktidhar Sharma of Asha Vermas Hindi script. He said the play was so imaginatively designed and artistically dramatised with the help of music and stage craft by the director that even persons with little knowledge of Sanskrit understood and enjoyed it. The performances, he said, had received a good applause, which was evident from the honours which the artistes had received everywhere.
Dr Hasiza said the
Sanskrit theatre campaign launched by the department also
provided an ample opportunity for interaction to
scholars, spiritual leaders, government authorities,
educationists and artistes.
Refresher course in English
AMRITSAR, May 24 A refresher course in English for college teachers is in progress at Guru Nanak Dev University. The emphasis is on the teaching of the English language and literature.
Forty-one participants from all over India are attending the course organised by the Academic Staff College of the university.
Eminent scholars and academicians from universities of Delhi, Shimla, Chandigarh, Kurukshetra and Rajasthan are participating.
The course encourages interaction among participants and resource persons regarding the update of classroom study in English.
Punjab told to repair college
NEW DELHI, May 24 The Chief Election Commissioner, Dr M S Gill, has asked the Punjab government to repair the premises of Government College, Ludhiana, damaged during the general election last year.
In a letter to the Chief Secretary of Punjab, Mr R S Mann, yesterday, the CEC said it is unfortunate that political parties have started using government educational institutions and his plea not to use these for election rallies was not heeded. Mr Gills communication came in the wake of a recent letter from the Principal of Government College, Ludhiana, to him in which he had raised the issue of repair of college grounds, pitch and boundary wall damaged during election rallies in August last year.
The Principal said these areas were extensively damaged during the election rallies addressed by the Prime Minister and the Congress President separately.
16 lakh tax evasion detected
CHANDIGARH, May 24 The Chandigarh Commissionerate of Central Excise has detected two cases of excise evasion of Rs 16 lakh at Amritsar. According to Mr Inder Raj Soni, Commissioner, Central Excise, Chandigarh Commissionerate, the evaders were two pharmaceutical units at Amritsar.
One of the units, an unregistered manufacturer and availing the benefit of small scale sector, had been clearing the medicines manufactured by them by affixing the logo of the wholesalers of medicines like Littman Remedies, Zodiac Pharmaceutical, Midas Health Care, etc without the payment of Central excise duty.
The officers, Mr Soni said, also resumed the records of the said manufacturing unit for the past two years. The scrutiny of the said records revealed that the said unit had removed branded goods with the logo of the wholesalers of medicines valued at Rs 88 lakh without payment of Central excise duty of Rs 16 lakh involved thereon and without obtaining the Central excise registration as required under the provisions of the law.
The benefit of small scale unit exemption is not available to a manufacturer if the goods manufacured and cleared by him are affixed with the brand name of another company.
The partner of the firm has admitted the use of logo of the said wholesalers of medicines on the goods manufactured by him and supplied to such wholesalers of medicines at Amritsar and Gurdaspur.
Similar modus operandi was followed by another firm at Amritsar in which duty evasion of Rs 2 lakh has been detected.
Sugarcane arrears on May 27
CHANDIGARH , May 24 The Punjab Cooperatives Minister, Mr Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, today said that all arrears payable to sugarcane growers would be paid at a function to be held in Seron village, Amritsar, on May 27.
|| Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
| Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | In Spotlight |
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
| 120 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |