Saturday, January 26, 2002, Chandigarh, India

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Congress fountainhead of corruption: Sukhbir BadalMr Sukhbir Singh Badal
Rampuraphul, January 25
A former Union Minister and SAD general secretary, Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal, dubbing the Congress charge sheet against the SAD-BJP government a bundle of allegations without proof in Chandigarh yesterday, alleged that the Congress was fountainhead of corruption.

Playing name game to confuse voters
Bathinda, January 25
Principal contenders of various parties seem to have started playing a “name game” to spoil the chances of one another as some of them have fielded candidates having identical names of their main opponents in their respective Assembly segments.

A war of flags at Samrala
Samrala, January 25
A fierce war of flags has virtually gripped this semi-urban constituency which is heading for a quadrangular contest. There is hardly any house, shop or building in this town which does not have the flag of one party or the other flying over it. 

Congress citadel faces challenge
Nawanshahr, January 25
This small district comprising three Assembly segments —Nawanshahr, Banga and Balachaur — has generally been a Congress citadel for long, even as the Akalis and the BSP have of late started registering their presence.

An unpredictable constituency
Moga, January 25
Moga is one of the smallest districts of Punjab carved out by Mr Harcharan Singh Brar in 1996 after he became the Chief Minister. But it remains quite important in Punjab politics.




Minister Sujan Singh dead
Malout, January 25
Mr Sujan Singh, Minister of State for Panchayat and Rural Development, Punjab, who had been renominated by the Shiromani Akali Dal from this reserved Assembly segment for the coming elections, died early this morning in his house at Kotbhai village in Muktsar district, 20 km from here, due to cardiac arrest. He was 61.

A contingent of the Punjab Police fires in the air in honour of the minister at the cremation on Friday at Kotbhai village.
A contingent of the Punjab Police fires in the air in honour of the minister at the cremation on Friday at Kotbhai village. — Photo by Kulbir Beera

CBI charge sheet against Bikramjit
Chandigarh, January 25
The special cell of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today filed a charge sheet in the court of the District Judge against Mr Bikramjit Singh, Principal Secretary, Home, Punjab, accusing him of “amassing wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income”.


Liquor gives hiccups to observers
Sangrur, January 25
The election observers appointed by the Election Commission of India today warned the contesting candidates that strict action would be taken against any candidate if they were found distributing liquor or intoxicants to the voters to lure them. They also asked the candidates to avoid long motorcades while campaigning in the constituency. 

Fierce contests in store
Gurdaspur, January 25
This district, a cocktail of several castes, will witness fierce straight contests in most of its assembly constituencies in spite of the presence of a large number of candidates.

Son-in-law gives Badal fever
Patti (Amritsar)
The prestige of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal is at stake in this constituency as his son-in-law Adeshpartap Singh Kairon is seeking re-election. However, infighting between the Kairon family and Mr Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, Cooperation Minister, which has reached a flashpoint has been giving sleepless nights to Mr Badal.

Tohra ruined unity chances: Badal
Rajpura, January 25
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today alleged that the Akali unity could not be achieved because of the impossible demands of the former SGPC President, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra. Addressing a public rally here in support of the BJP candidate and senior leader Mr Balramji Das Tandon, and later at Ghanaur in favour of the SAD nominee Ajaib Singh Mukhmailpur, the Chief Minister said the SGPC President had put up one demand after an other as he did not want unity and was in league with the Congress.

It is the bomb factor here!
Fatehpur (Mandi Gobindgarh), January 25
The impending Assembly elections in Punjab are being fought on varied issues ranging from development to corruption to unemployment and SYL but for the hundreds of residents of this village, falling in the Sirhind constituency, the main concern is the threatening presence of hundreds of explosives dumped in a rivulet near the village, allegedly by scrap and furnace industrialists of Mandi Gobindgarh.

Morcha to probe militancy
Ludhiana, January 25
The Shiromani Akali Dal (Panthic Morcha) will stick to the Anandpur Sahib resolution and seek solution of all outstanding Panthic and political issues according to this document only. Besides, if voted to power, it will set up a commission to probe the reasons that led to a decade of militancy in Punjab.

NDA may recommend mid-term poll: Jakhar
Abohar, January 25
The results of the Assembly elections in UP and Uttranchal may force the NDA government to recommend a mid-term poll for the Lok Sabha.

Setback for Congress nominee
Ferozepore, January 25
Mr Bal Mukand Sharma, Congress candidate from the Ferozepore city constituency, got a jolt today with most of the Congress leaders of the city deciding to back an Independent candidate, Mr Ashwani Mehta.

PM to address rally on Feb 6
Chandigarh, January 25
The Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, will address BJP rallies at Ferozepore and Pathankot on February 6, party sources said today.

BJP leaders counter RSS charges
Ludhiana, January 25
The confrontation between the BJP and the RSS yesterday took a serious turn with state BJP leaders saying that the RSS leaders were ‘‘misguided and playing in the hands of vested interests’’. They also asserted that the RSS leaders, although respected, had no role in deciding the policies of the BJP and least of all candidates to be fielded.

Garg makes tall claims
Bathinda, January 25
Mr Chiranji Lal Garg, Minister for Science and Technology, Punjab, who has been renominated by the SAD from his Assembly segment, while dubbing the Congress as an issueless party said people would make a judicious choice on February 13 and bring the SAD-BJP alliance back to power.

Lok Jan Shakti backs Brar
Chandigarh, January 25
The Lok Jan Shakti Party has pledged its support to Mr Harcharan Singh Brar, former Chief Minister of Punjab, who is contesting as a Congress candidate from the Muktsar assembly constituency.


‘Punjabiat’ no longer binds them together
Samana (Patiala), January 25
Punjabiat and Hindu-Sikh brotherhood may have been symbolised by the SAD and Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, but the grand alliance with the BJP which saw it carving out a huge majority in the last assembly elections seems to be breaking apart with those living in the urban areas keeping away from the rallies of the Chief Minister.

President’s Medal for Bhullar, 9 others
Chandigarh, January 25
Ten officers and men of the Punjab police have been chosen for the award of the President’s Police Medal on Republic Day. They include Asian Games gold medalist wrestler Kartar Singh and Inspector-General of Police (Intelligence), Mr Sukhdyal Singh Bhullar.

‘Abstain’ from voting for drugs
Amritsar, January 25
To ensure drug-free elections, a unique drive has been launched from Maqboolpura, a locality of widows, where at least 50 drug addicts have died in the past few years.

National honour for Punjabi language
N 1994 Dalip Kaur Tiwana was given a junior fellowship by the Union Department of Culture. Since smaller writers in other languages got bigger fellowships, she felt slighted and refused it with a rebuke: “This shows that the selectors either don’t have any knowledge of Punjabi literature or they are willing to accord it only the status of B-grade literature.”

Alarming decline in sex ratio
Ludhiana, January 25
There has been an alarming decline in the sex ratio among children up to six years of age in the last decade. While the sex ratio among children in this age group in 1991 was 875 girls per 1000 boys in 2001 it came down to 793 girls per 1000 boys.

IGP, Litigation, relieved from duty
Chandigarh, January 25
The Punjab Government has relieved, Mr R.K. Sharma, Inspector General of Police, Litigation Branch, Punjab, from his duties with immediate effect according to an order issued by Mr Bikramjit Singh, Home Secretary, Punjab. He has been relieved in the light of the Supreme Court’s order.

Bitter after ‘experiments with truth’
Chandigarh, January 25
He is guilty of innocence. Indictable for believing honesty to be the best policy. Reproachable for blabbering out the reality when he could have maintained silence. Rundown, exhausted and disheartened after his “experiments with truth”, Balwinder Singh — prime witness in Punjab’s former Chief Minister Beant Singh’s assassination case —today plans to hand over a memorandum to the UT Administrator during the Republic Day celebrations.

‘We won’t give a drop of water’
Samana, January 25
Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister of Punjab and President of the SAD, while addressing an election rally of Mr Surjit Singh Rakhra, SAD-BJP candidate from the Samana constituency, today said whenever there was a Congress government at the Centre it always gave a stepmotherly treatment to the people of Punjab.

Villagers seek better bus facilities
Bathinda, January 25
Residents of Gillpatti village have urged the district authorities to provide proper bus service to their village.

BKU’s ‘rail roko’ stir on February 8
Bhikhi (Mansa), January 25
The Bharatiya Kisan Union, Ekta (BKU, E) has decided to block rail traffic in the state on February 8. This was stated here today by union leadership at a state-level rally organised as part of “waive loan” campaign launched in the state. 

A rationalist even in death
Bathinda, January 25
Honouring wishes of Krishan Bargari, state president of the Tarakshil Society, Punjab, his son handed over the body to Dr Mauli, Head of Department of Anatomy, CMC, Ludhiana.


Poll panel may relax I-card conditions
Ropar, January 25
Identity card condition for casting votes, might be relaxed by the Election Commission. An indication to this effect was given by the District Election Officer, Mr G.S. Grewal, here yesterday. He said in view of the current situation, the Election Commission would have to relax the condition of identity cards.

New IGP (IRB) at Patiala
Chandigarh, January 25
The following police officers were today transferred on administrative grounds (completion of four years/ home district service).


Medical college students attacked by 20 ‘outsiders’
Amritsar, January 25
There was tension in the Government Medical College here after an attack on medical students by 20 boys at 10.30 a.m. today. Saurab Sharma received serious injuries when one of the boys, who were all outsiders chopped three of his fingers with a butchers knife “datar”. 

Four women arrested for running brothel
Bathinda, January 25
Even as the district police has stepped up vigil on mischief makers and anti-social elements, the latter have been devising new ways to indulge in illegal activities under cover whether it is peddling of poppy husk, distillation of illicit liquor or even running a brothel.

14 arrested for smuggling drugs
Bathinda, January 25
The police has arrested 14 persons and registered 10 cases against them under the NDPS Act at various police stations of the district in drive against smuggling of narcotics.


Symposium on Vivekananda’s philosophy
Bathinda, January 25
Swami Vivekananda Study Circle here is celebrating national youth day on January 27 and organising a symposium on the philosophy of Swami Vivekananda and its relevance to present day youth, at local DAV college.


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