Saturday, February 2, 2002, Chandigarh, India

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SAD-BJP all set to launch final assault
Badal to release party manifesto today
Chandigarh, February 1
The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party alliance is all set to launch a ‘‘massive final assault’’ from tomorrow for the coming Punjab Assembly elections.

They left bullet for ballot
Tarn Taran, February 1
Many gun-totting youths who had compelled the Shiromani Akali Dal to boycott the February 1992 elections, can now be seen taking an active part in the electioneering. Most of them had surrendered before the security forces a decade ago to lead a normal life in their respective villages.

Winning over dissidents Amarinder style
Border belt (Amritsar/ Ferozepore), February 1
Mr Gurinder Singh Kairon, Congress candidate from Tarn Taran, sits with PPCC president Amarinder Singh in a private helicopter, which takes off from the Rajasansi international airport at 10 a.m. Before landing at Tarn Taran, Mr Kairon briefs the PPCC chief on the trouble he has been getting from rebels who were denied party tickets.

Fatehgarh Sahib


  Bank employee shot dead
Ferozepore, February 1
Two unidentified motor cycle-borne armed men shot dead a bank employee and escaped with Rs 10 lakh near Zira in the district today, the police said.


Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Kanshi Ram
Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Kanshi Ram releases the party manifesto in Jalandhar on Thursday. — PTI photo

Jagmeet factor looms large
Muktsar, February 1
The “Jagmeet factor” is looming large in nine Assembly segments of Muktsar, Faridkot and Moga districts of Punjab where the Congress is locked in a contest for power with the ruling SAD-BJP alliance.

Doughty Captain vs young widow
Patiala, February 1
A doughty former Captain of the Indian Army takes on a widow in the backward constituency of Banur. The battle is being closely watched due to the potential of the Capt Kanwaljit Singh to make it to the top post in SAD.

Rebels hold key in Bathinda
Bathinda, February 1
The elections in the Bathinda Assembly segment has divided most of the important families of this area over the support to the contestants. Though there are 16 contestants in this Assembly segment, including Mr Surinder Singla, an eminent economist and the Congress candidate, Mr Chiranji Lal Garg, the sitting MLA and the SAD candidate, Mr Kulwant Rai Aggarwal, a rebel Congress candidate, who has been expelled from the party for six years, Mr Sham Jaura, the BSP, candidate, Mr Rajbir Singh Sidhu, the General Samaj Party candidate and Mr Gurdeep Singh of the Panthic Morcha.

Posters of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and other election campaign material kept outside a printing press for sale in Amritsar on Friday.
— PTI photo

A computer-savvy candidate
Chandigarh, February 1
In the forthcoming Assembly elections in Punjab, information technology is playing a key role. Mr Brahm Mohindra, a senior Congress leader, has made it a point to start his day by switching on his computer terminal to have a review of the Samana constituency from where he is contesting as the Congress candidate.

Badal dares Morcha to back Congress openly
Fatehgarh Sahib, February 1
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, while addressing an election rally at Sirhind town today in support of SAD candidate Didar Singh Bhatti, lashed out at the Panthic Morcha and Congress leaders. He said a true Sikh couldn’t vote for the Congress as “it has destroyed us religiously, politically and economically during its 45-year rule.” He advised the morcha leaders to join the Congress instead of helping it indirectly.


Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra
Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, MP and President of the Sarab-Hind Shiromani Akali Dal, addresses an election meeting in Lang village in Patiala district, organised in favour of Mr Jagtar Singh Rajla, a candidate of the Panthic Morcha from the Samana Assembly constituency. — Bahia

SAD govt will be voted out: Surjeet
Nawanshahr, February 1
The CPM General Secretary, Mr Harkishen Singh Surjeet, while addressing an election rally in favour of the CPM nominee from the Banga assembly segment, Mr Avtar Chand, at Banga town today accused the BJP-led NDA government of deserting the traditional policy of non-alignment by supporting the USA.

Uma blames Congress for terrorism
Batala, February 1
Union Sports Minister Uma Bharti today visited the town and addressed a rally at Leekwala Talaab in support of Mr Jagdish Sawhney, the BJP-SAD combine candidate for the Punjab Assembly elections.

PPCC president Amarinder Singh at a rally
PPCC president Amarinder Singh at a rally in Tarn Taran on Friday. — Photo Gurbax Puri



Village youths to get incentives if Congress wins
Bathinda, February 1
Mr Surinder Singla, local Congress candidate, said today that the rural youths would be given incentives to start their business if the Congress was voted to power in the state.


Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner S. K. Sandhu explaining the details of the electronic voting machine to be used in the elections in Punjab. 
— Photo Happy

Flags proclaim loyalty, support
Bathinda, February 1
The contestants in all the five Assembly segments falling in this district are trying to reach out to a maximum number of voters by adopting all means of campaigning. While the urban voters are keeping them guessing, the rural voters are expressing their support, loyalty and commitment by putting up party flags on their entrances and rooftops.

Employees hold the key
Ropar, February 1
Employees and their families, traditionally a silent vote bank never coming out openly in support of any party, may hold the key in four out of the five Assembly constituencies in Ropar.

Poll to hit health?
Fazilka, February 1
The Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Election Officer, Ferozepore, has appointed several Class IV employees, including sweepers, dhobis and ward servants of the Health Department, Punjab, as polling officers for Punjab Assembly election. Not only this, the office has issued orders to nearly 400 employees of the Health Department, which include more than 300 paramedical employees performing emergency duty.

Harassment cases: Dang writes to Jacob
Amritsar, February 1
Mr Satya Pal Dang, CPI leader, expressed his dismay over the way in which sexual harassment cases were handled at Guru Nanak Dev University here. In a correspondence to the Governor, Lt Gen J.F.R. Jacob, he said punishment given to the main “culprits” in such cases was inadequate and not a deterrent for the magnitude of the crime.

Global status for Ropar, Kanjli wetlands
Chandigarh, February 1
The Ramsar Convention Bureau, Switzerland, has included Ropar and Kanjli wetlands in the Ramsar list. With the inclusion of these two wetlands, India has now eight wetlands of international importance, covering 194,521 hectares of area. Talking to TNS today, Mr N.S. Tiwana, Executive Director, Punjab State Council for Science and Technology, said these wetlands had been declared as Ramsar sites.

Villagers examined at Army medical camp
Fazilka, February 1
The presence of the Army in villages along the international border might have caused some initial inconvenience to the residents of these villages but the Army men are now lending a helping hand to them.

Roadways men flay SAD policies
Muktsar, February 1
The joint action committee of the Punjab Roadways Employees Association has flayed the Akali government’s policies and its alleged indifferent attitude towards the demands of the roadways employees.

Border villagers get arms training
Gurdaspur, February 1
Villagers of Kassowal located on the Gurdaspur-Amritsar border closed to the Indo-Pak border, who have returned to their houses are feeling more secure and modified now. They said they Army had made efforts to develop a rapport between the Army and locals.


Suicide by bride, in-laws held
Amritsar, February 1
Three persons were booked in a dowry case by the Sultanwind police after Harjinder Kaur committed suicide. She had consumed poison a few days ago. In an FIR registered on January 30, Mangal Singh, father of the deceased, has alleged that Harjinder was harassed and beaten up by her husband Sukhwinder Singh, mother- in- law, Satwant Kaur and sister- in- law Bholi. They were demanding more dowry A case under section 306,34 of the IPC has been registered.

‘Benami’ property dealer held
Jalandhar, February 1
The district police yesterday arrested Bhushan Dhawan for making “benami” property deals on behalf of Naresh Kapur, an accused in multi-crore Indira Vikas Patra case. Mr L.K. Yadav, SP, stated here that Bhushan Dhawan, a resident of local Green Model Town locality, invested money raised through loans from different banks by pledging Indira Vikas Patras and Kisan Vikas Patras allegedly stolen from Patna railway station by Naresh Kapur.

Man kills wife, arrested
Ludhiana, February 1
In a gory murder, a middle-aged man allegedly murdered his wife after torturing her with a hot iron to make her confess about an illicit relationship. The police has arrested the accused and said the man suspected his wife’s character and used to beat her often.


PUTA general body meeting ends in chaos
Patiala, February 1
The long-awaited Punjabi University Teachers Association's general body meeting ended in chaos today with rival factions clashing over the right to convene the meeting.

National youth festival begins
Amritsar, February 1
A five-day All-India Inter-Varsity National Youth Festival commenced at Guru Nanak Dev University here today amid much fanfare. More than 1,000 student artists from 62 universities are participating in the festival which was inaugurated by the Governor, Lt-Gen J. F. R. Jacob (retd).

Students carry music paraphernalia for the National Inter-Varsity Festival which commenced at Guru Nanak Dev University in Amritsar on Friday. — Photo Rajiv Sharma


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