Friday, August 17, 2001, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


BKU flays govt, plans agitation
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 16
The Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU), considered to be having a soft corner for the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), today lashed out at the government for denial of remunerative prices to the farmers and rampant corruption in Punjab. It would launch a mass agitation to seek justice and safeguard interests of the farming community.

The BKU president, Mr Ajmer Singh Lakhowal, said in a press statement here that corruption was a major poll issue for the ruling combine during the last Assembly election, but after coming to power the promises of providing a clean governance and a crackdown on corrupt officials and politicians were simply forgotten. ‘‘The unholy nexus between bureaucrats and politicians is holding the state to ransom and corruption has crossed all limits, while the government functionaries remain as unconcerned as ever,’’ he said.

Mr Lakhowal further charged the government with denial of remunerative prices to farmers for their farm produce. For the simple reason that the prices of agricultural produce were not linked with the price index, the farmers had come under heavy debts. As against 13-fold hike in the prices on the basis of wholesale price index, the prices of agricultural commodities had risen to only 8 to 9 times, he said.

He expressed serious concern over the unabated sale of spurious fertilisers, insecticide and pesticides in the state and total inaction on the part of government agencies. ‘‘The government officials are helplessly watching the exploitation of farmers by unscrupulous elements, to the extent that one would suspect their complicity in the racket,’’ he said.

The BKU chief said the functionaries of the union would offer prayers at Sri Akal Takht in Amritsar on August 19 and thereafter a detailed programme of a mass agitation would be announced. According to Mr Lakhowal, the BKU would mobilise farmers all over the state to put up a relentless fight against injustice, exploitation and corruption.


Workshop for college Principals begins
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 16
A three-day workshop on Managerial Leadership Development Programme for principals of Panjab University colleges began at GGN Khalsa College, Civil Lines, here today.

Addressing the principals, Dr G.S. Gosal, former Dean, College Development Council, Panjab University, said there was a need to bring transition in working of the colleges. He said the principals should change their bureaucratic style of administration to managerial leadership.

While discussing the examination system, he said the university was allowing wide choice in all question papers which promoted selective reading habit among the students. The students learn selective topics and, thus, fail to get basic knowledge of the subject, he said. For this, he said, multiple choice and short answer questions should also be given along with essay type questions.

He said students were more serious about qualifying entrance tests and paid less attention to what was being taught in classrooms. He suggested that while preparing the merit list, 50 per cent weightage should be given to entrance test and 50 per cent to the result of annual examination conducted by the university.

He also highlighted the importance of research work. He said all universities and colleges should be allowed to function as autonomous bodies. This, he said, would lead to competition among various colleges.

Professor S.L. Sharma, Department of Sociology, Panjab University, Dr Ramesh Kapoor, honorary Dean, College Development Council, PU, and Prof K.K. Uppal, Professor Commerce, PU, also talked about improving managerial leadership in colleges. Prof Satish Sharma, lecturer, Arya College and Syndic of the university, said similar programmes would be organised at different places by the university. About 20 out of the total 34 principals of the district attended the programme.

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