Thursday, November 22, 2001, Chandigarh, India





National Capital Region--Delhi

THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
H I M A C H A L   P R A D E S H

Drive to correct revenue entries soon
Shimla, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Government has decided to launch a campaign for demarcation, mutation and correction of revenue entries and to decide the cases of Partition in the state from December 15, 2001 to May 15, 2002. This was announced by the Chief Minister, Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, while presiding over the concluding seminar of state-level revenue officers here yesterday.

BJP plans stir against Congress
Shimla, November 21
With the Assembly elections coming near in Himachal Pradesh, the ruling BJP will launch an aggressive campaign against the Congress party to paint it as ‘anti-development” and “expose” the scandals of its regime.

Furniture worth Rs 40 lakh seized
Shimla, November 21
In a raid on a leading furniture house here, the Excise and Taxation Department seized articles worth over Rs 40 lakh today. The Mahalakshmi Furniture House on the national highway near Shogi was raided by officials of the flying squad of the Excise Department following reports of illegal trading in furniture by the owner.

Rs 2.09 cr fine for felling green trees
Shimla, November 21
A penalty of Rs 2.09 crore has been imposed on the Malana Power Company by the Himachal Pradesh Government for felling about 1,400 green trees without the prior permission of the authorities for constructing their hydro-electric project in Kulu district.

Rs 2.66 cr for AIDS awareness drive
Mandi, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Government has launched a vigorous AIDS awareness campaign in the state to combat the scourge of the dreaded disease. Speaking at a workshop specially organised for newspersons at the Conference Hall of the local Regional Hospital today, the state AIDS Control Programme officer, Dr C.D. Sharma, said a sum of Rs 2.66 crore was being spent on creating awareness among people, particularly the most vulnerable sections of society, about AIDS and HIV.



Tibetans living in exile in India celebrate the 60th anniversary of the enthronement of the 14th Dalai Lama.

(28k, 56k)

YOUR TOWN
Chamba
Dharamsala
Kulu
Mandi
Shimla


EARLIER STORIES

 

No doctors for ‘amchi’ clinics
Shimla, November 21
The traditional Tibetan medicine system has failed to take off as trained “amchis” (doctors) are not coming forward to join government job in Himachal Pradesh.

CM’s clarification on chopper bill
Shimla, November 21
Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, Chief Minister, has taken strong exception to the statements of Congress leaders, including that of former Chief Minister, Mr Virbhadra Singh, alleging that the state government had hired a helicopter for the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narender Modi, for attending a BJP rally at Nurpur.

Postage stamp on Sobha Singh
Shimla, November 21
A postage stamp will be issued on November 29 here to commemorate the birth centenary of famous painter Sobha Singh. Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has urged the Union Minister for Communications, Mr Parmod Mahajan, to preside over the function being organised to release the stamp.

HC allows 90 pc pension for convicted ex-serviceman
Shimla, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the Ministry of Defence to release 90 per cent pension to an ex- serviceman who had been sentenced to life imprisonment for murder. Padam Nath had filed a petition for directing the Union of India to grant pension to him by setting aside an order of the authorities for release of only 50 per cent pension.

Modify transfer policy: HPNGOs
Chamba, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Non-Gazetted Employees Federation (HPNGOs) has demanded that ‘transfer policy’ be amended and implemented effectively.

NHPC’s thrust on cheap power: CMD
Chamba, November 21
The National Hydroelectric Power Corporation has set a target to generate 10,000 mw of power in the country during the next 10 years, Mr Yogendra Prasad, Chairman and Managing Director of the NHPC, said here yesterday during his visit to the Chamera hydroelectric project in the district.

Education given facelift: minister
Kulu, November 21
The government under the leadership of Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has undertaken unprecedented development works in the state, particularly in Kulu district. This was stated by Minister of State for Primary Education, Karan Singh, who represents the district, while talking this correspondent here today.

Inquiry demanded into death
Dharamsala, November 21
The family of Kaman Singh of Tikka Chorad village in Dehra subdivision has demanded an inquiry into his death as they suspected foul play in it.



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Drive to correct revenue entries soon
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Government has decided to launch a campaign for demarcation, mutation and correction of revenue entries and to decide the cases of Partition in the state from December 15, 2001 to May 15, 2002. This was announced by the Chief Minister, Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, while presiding over the concluding seminar of state-level revenue officers here yesterday.

Mr Dhumal said the cases of demarcation would be decided from December 15, 2001 to January 15, 2002, mutation cases from January 16, 2002 to February 15, 2002, correction of revenue entries from February 16 to March 15, 2002 and cases of Partition from March 16 to May 15, 2002.

The decision followed the recommendations of the revenue officers at the two-day seminar organised by the Revenue Department which was also attended by a high-powered committee constituted by the government to suggest suitable recommendations in the revenue laws to make these realistic in the present context.

The retired revenue officers, including Kanungos, would also be involved in the campaign so that cases were decided speedily.

The Chief Minister said the government had also decided to had over document of registry to the person concerned on the same day on which the dead would be registered. This would bring transparency and save the people from inconvenience.

He said the government would also consider the recommendations that the registration fee and stamp duty should be lessened. He said a proposal regarding the use of private vehicles by the revenue officers for government duty and giving them travelling allowance for the same would also be considered by the government.

He said surplus land allotted to people under Nautor rules, 1968 and landless schemes, 1975, would not be taken back. He urged the revenue officers to educate people about it. The government had started computerisation of land records, he said.

Dr Rajan Sushant, Minister of State for Revenue, stressed defining of the jurisdiction of the revenue courts, selection of a panel of advocates for the courts and also fixation of a court day for revenue officers.
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BJP plans stir against Congress
S.P. Sharma
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
With the Assembly elections coming near in Himachal Pradesh, the ruling BJP will launch an aggressive campaign against the Congress party to paint it as ‘anti-development” and “expose” the scandals of its regime.

The decision was reportedly taken at a meeting of the legislature party of the BJP which was held here yesterday to assess the impact of the recent “vikas yatra” of the party and also give shape to its election strategy. The meeting presided over by the Chief Minister, Mr P.K. Dhumal, expressed satisfaction over the response of the people to the statewide “vikas yatra”.

More or less the CLP leader, Mr Virbhadra Singh, was reportedly the target of most of the participants at the meeting.

The Minister of State for Excise and Taxation, Mr Parveen Sharma, told reporters that the “misdeeds” of the previous Congress government would be exposed. He said the BJP would question the small and big leaders of the Congress about their party’s contribution in making Himachal self-reliant and steps taken by their successive governments for tapping the hydroelectric potential. The Congress activists would also be asked why their leaders were creating hurdles in the development of the state by announcing that all MoUs for power projects signed by the present BJP government would be reviewed.

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Furniture worth Rs 40 lakh seized
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
In a raid on a leading furniture house here, the Excise and Taxation Department seized articles worth over Rs 40 lakh today.

The Mahalakshmi Furniture House on the national highway near Shogi was raided by officials of the flying squad of the Excise Department following reports of illegal trading in furniture by the owner.

Officials of the department said the manager of the company failed to produce the record pertaining to certain transactions.

It is alleged that he was paying the sales tax at the rate of 1 per cent to the department instead of 8 per cent.

Only those manufacturing the furniture locally were levied a sales tax of 1 per cent and those bringing it from outside the state were required to pay 8 per cent and in this case, prima facie most of the furniture was being brought from other places, a spokesman for the department said.

When contacted, the Excise Commissioner, Mr Sanjeev Gupta, confirmed the seizure and said further action would be taken against the guilty as per the law.

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Rs 2.09 cr fine for felling green trees
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
A penalty of Rs 2.09 crore has been imposed on the Malana Power Company by the Himachal Pradesh Government for felling about 1,400 green trees without the prior permission of the authorities for constructing their hydro-electric project in Kulu district.

The project authorities have been ordered to pay the penalty by Thursday, failing which an FIR will be registered against them and the environment clearance in their favour withdrawn. The felling of trees was in violation of the orders of the Supreme Court and guidelines of the Central Forest Department, it is learnt.

The Financial Commissioner (Forests), Mr Avay Shukla, said the explanation of the conservator and DFO of the Parbati range had been sought as to why they failed to take action against the erring company which indulged in illegal felling of trees for about two years.

It is learnt that the company allegedly indulged in massive felling of green trees with connivance of certain local politicians. The company officials have, however, been claiming that they did not violate the rules while cutting these trees.

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Rs 2.66 cr for AIDS awareness drive
Our Correspondent

Mandi, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Government has launched a vigorous AIDS awareness campaign in the state to combat the scourge of the dreaded disease. Speaking at a workshop specially organised for newspersons at the Conference Hall of the local Regional Hospital today, the state AIDS Control Programme officer, Dr C.D. Sharma, said a sum of Rs 2.66 crore was being spent on creating awareness among people, particularly the most vulnerable sections of society, about AIDS and HIV.

He said the most important thing to know about AIDS was that it could be prevented but not cured.

Dr Sharma said the risk factor of AIDS was multiplied for persons suffering from sexually transmitted diseases (STD), which were curable. He said such diseases should be cured at the earliest to avoid the invasion of AIDS, which was incurable.

He said AIDS testing facilities would be provided shortly in Mandi, Hamirpur, Dharamsala and Bilaspur. By 2004, every district would be equipped with this facility, he said. Mr Sharma said 87 HIV positive cases had been detected in Hamirpur district, 52 in Bilaspur, 43 in Mandi, 41 in Kangra, 22 in Solan, 15 in Una, 9 in Kulu, 7 in Chamba, 8 in Sirmaur and 4 in Kinnaur districts.

Dr S.K. Joshi, a state AIDS Control Programme officials said the most vulnerable sections identified by the Department of Health were truckers, migrant labour, hotel workers and jail inmates.

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No doctors for ‘amchi’ clinics
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
The traditional Tibetan medicine system has failed to take off as trained “amchis” (doctors) are not coming forward to join government job in Himachal Pradesh.

The efforts of the government to fill the post of “amchi” have proved futile as there has been little response to the advertisements of the state Public Service Commission in this regard.

The four “amchi” clinics opened by the government in June, 1999, in the tribal areas of Rekong-Peo, Pooh, Kaza and Keylong have not been functional so far. Only recently an “amchi” has been selected for appointment at the clinic in Keylong.

It is learnt that there was not a single application in response to the post advertised for the first time. Therefore, only one application from a qualified “amchi” was received and he has been issued an appointment letter.

The Minister of State for Ayurveda, Mr Mohan Lal, confirmed that the government was facing difficulty in making these clinics run because of non-availability of “amchis”.

Mr J.R. Verma, Director of Ayurveda, said the Tibetan Government-in-exile had been contacted at Dharamsala to provide qualified doctors for running the other three clinics.

The “amchis” were being trained at the medical college of the government-in-exile in Dharamsala and Ladakh. However, these doctors either got posted at clinics of the Tibetan Government or undertook private practice. Many of them had migrated to other countries to cater to the needs of the Tibetan population there. Moreover, the government was looking for ‘amchis” of Himachal origin as Tibetans being foreign nationals could not be employed in these clinics, he added.
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CM’s clarification on chopper bill
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, Chief Minister, has taken strong exception to the statements of Congress leaders, including that of former Chief Minister, Mr Virbhadra Singh, alleging that the state government had hired a helicopter for the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Narender Modi, for attending a BJP rally at Nurpur.

Mr Dhumal said it did not behove Mr Virbhadra Singh, to give such statements without verifying facts. He said that the state BJP had hired the helicopter for the visit of Mr Modi and the bill had also been raised in the name of the party.

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Postage stamp on Sobha Singh
Tribune News Service

Shimla, November 21
A postage stamp will be issued on November 29 here to commemorate the birth centenary of famous painter Sobha Singh.

Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has urged the Union Minister for Communications, Mr Parmod Mahajan, to preside over the function being organised to release the stamp.

The Chief Minister has also thanked the Central Government, especially the postal authorities, for having agreed to release the stamp in view of the contribution of Sobha Singh who resided at Andretta in Kangra district for about four decades.

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HC allows 90 pc pension for convicted ex-serviceman
Legal Correspondent

Shimla, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the Ministry of Defence to release 90 per cent pension to an ex- serviceman who had been sentenced to life imprisonment for murder. Padam Nath had filed a petition for directing the Union of India to grant pension to him by setting aside an order of the authorities for release of only 50 per cent pension.

The petitioner, who is an ex-serviceman, was receiving pension since 1978. He was convicted for murder by the Sessions Judge on July 6, 1993, and was sentenced to undergo imprisonment for life. In the meanwhile, the petitioner’s pension was withheld by the respondents in view of his conviction.

The petitioner was, therefore, constrained to approach the court, which allowed his plea for grant of pension on March 21, 1997. The authorities decided to give 50 per cent pension to the family of the petitioner and the remaining 50 per cent was withheld. This decision was challenged by the petitioner in the present petition.

The high court observed that the petition deserves to be partly allowed. It directed the authorities to release the pension to the extent of 90 per cent and in view of his conviction and sentence, only 10 per cent of the amount of pension might be withheld.

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Modify transfer policy: HPNGOs
Our Correspondent

Chamba, November 21
The Himachal Pradesh Non-Gazetted Employees Federation (HPNGOs) has demanded that ‘transfer policy’ be amended and implemented effectively.

At a news conference here last night, Mr Ganga Singh Thakur, President of the HPNGOs, said state-level transfer review committee under the Chairmanship of Mr Kishori Lal, Himachal Industries Minister had been set up.

He demanded scrapping of the Himachal Administrative Tribunal (HAT), as the purpose for which it was set up had been defeated. He said that Rs 12 crore was being spent o the tribunal every year. The state government had already recommended to the Centre for its scrapping, he said.

He opposed move to privatise essential services here Health and Education and demanded to review of usher charges. He also took note of irregularities in the allotment of houses to the government officials in Chamba and Una. 

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NHPC’s thrust on cheap power: CMD
Our Correspondent

Chamba, November 21
The National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) has set a target to generate 10,000 mw of power in the country during the next 10 years, Mr Yogendra Prasad, Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of the NHPC, said here yesterday during his visit to the Chamera hydroelectric project in the district.

The CMD disclosed that the detailed project report of the Chamera hydroelectric project (stage-III) on the Ravi in the district had been prepared and the execution work on the project would commence by March next year. The project would cost about Rs 1,500 crore.

He said the work on the stage-III of the 2021 mw Parbati hydroelectric project would also be taken up for construction in March next year.

The CMD stated the NHPC was laying more thrust on the generation of cheap electricity. He said there were vast possibilities of geo-thermal power projects in Andaman and Nicobar adding that the NHPC had already commissioned one mw of geo-thermal project in Orissa, which was a new record in the history of the country.

The work on 1000 mw Pawal Dal hydroelectric project and 120 mw hydroelectric projects in Jammu and Kashmir had been started on a war footing, he added.

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Education given facelift: minister
Our Correspondent

Kulu, November 21
The government under the leadership of Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has undertaken unprecedented development works in the state, particularly in Kulu district. This was stated by Minister of State for Primary Education, Karan Singh, who represents the district, while talking this correspondent here today.

The minister said a facelift had been given to the primary education in the state. He said the District Primary Education Programme had kindled a hope for the underprivileged.

He claimed that the enrolment of children from class I to V had reached the 100 per cent mark. School dropouts had been reduced to less than 2 per cent as against 20 per cent in 1996 in Kulu, Sirmaur, Chamba and Lahaul and Spiti since the implementation of the programme.

He said 808 new primary schools had been opened in the four districts besides creation of 1616 posts of teachers. He said 321 new primary school buildings had been constructed up to March 31, 2001.
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Inquiry demanded into death
Tribune News Service

Dharamsala, November 21
The family of Kaman Singh of Tikka Chorad village in Dehra subdivision has demanded an inquiry into his death as they suspected foul play in it.

Kaman Singh (53) was killed two days back when he was allegedly it by a bullet fired by Jeet Singh, while hunting. In representations to the Deputy Commissioner and the SSP, Kangra, son of the deceased, Mr Gurmel Singh Kathiala, has alleged that the death of his father was not an accident but a conspiracy. The wife of the deceased, Ms Raksha Singh, has demanded that a proper inquiry should be conducted so that appropriate legal action could be taken against the guilty.

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