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SAD contacts BSP to forge poll alliance
Chandigarh, January 17
Immediately after the meeting of its top brass here today, the Shiromani Akali Dal established contact with senior leaders of the Bahujan Samaj Party to assess their mood for entering into electoral alliance with the SAD to contest the Lok Sabha elections.

Capt Kanwaljit Singh, a senior leader of the SAD, addresses a meeting Capt Kanwaljit Singh, a senior leader of the SAD, addresses a meeting of party leaders in Chandigarh on Saturday. Mr Parkash Singh Badal, President of the party, is also seen in the picture. 
— Tribune photo by Manoj Mahajan

Forensic examination of receipts sought in Bhattal case
Chandigarh, January 17
In less than a fortnight after state of Punjab sought directions for deferring framing of charges against Deputy Chief Minister (designate) Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, complainant Balwant Singh Dhillon today claimed that the receipts had to be examined by forensic experts.




Punjab Govt rejects crop insurance scheme
Chandigarh, January 17
The Punjab Government has rejected the new crop insurance scheme announced recently by the Central Government. The state has proposed that the scheme should be amended to cover wheat and paddy, two major crops in the state.

Spokesman Editor given last chance to clarify position
Amritsar, January 17
The Sikh clerics, who held a meeting at Akal Takht secretariat here today, gave yet another chance to Mr Joginder Singh, Editor of the Spokesman, to clarify his position at the earliest. In case he failed to do so before the next meeting, an action as per ‘Sikh maryada’, which may include excommunication from the Sikh panth, would be taken against him.

Admission of 6 MBBS students to DMC terminated
Chandigarh, January 17
The Punjab government on Wednesday ordered the termination of admission of six students of MBBS to Dayanand Medical College, Ludhiana, and also forwarded to it the names of new students to be admitted with immediate effect, it is reliably learnt.

HC quashes school’s plea on post of music teacher
Chandigarh, January 17
The Punjab and Haryana High Court, in a significant judgement, has turned down a private-aided school’s defence that there was no frozen or aided post available for a music teacher reinstated following a decree passed by a court.


Rajanbir joins SAD
Chandigarh, January 17
Mr Rajanbir Singh, a Congress leader, today joined the Shiromani Akali Dal. This has been announced by the SAD President, Mr Parkash Singh Badal.

Hanspal seeks names for LS nominee
Chandigarh, January 17
The Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President, Mr H.S. Hanspal, has directed all district president’s of the party in the state to recommend panels of three names each for their respective Lok Sabha constituencies. 


Govt not serious about transferring powers to panchayats, says Badal
Ropar, January 17
A former Chief Minister and President of the SAD, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, said today that the announcement of the Congress government regarding transfer of powers to panchayats was a political gimmick. Addressing a press conference here, Mr Badal alleged that the Congress had organised a huge political rally at Bathinda on public expenses in the guise of transferring powers to panchayats.

No outsiders on Talhan gurdwara panel: villagers
Talhan (Jalandhar), January 17
Residents of the village have decided not to include five outside members in the new management committee, which runs the affairs of Gurdwara Shahid Baba Nihal Singh.

SSP’s assurance to ex-cops on discharge cards
Amritsar, January 17
Mr Kultar Singh, Senior Superintendent of Police, assured the retired policemen to follow up on the requests of issuing of discharge cards on the pattern of Army retirees. He was speaking on the occasion of Police Elders Day in the Police Lines here today.

Govt warned against giving more quota
Bathinda, January 17
The local unit of the General Category Welfare Federation, Punjab, has warned the state government that if it implements the 85th amendment to the Constitution for facilitating more quota to employees of the reserved categories, it will have to face the consequences in the next Lok Sabha elections.

SGPC ex-secy may face axe
Amritsar, January 17
The forthcoming SGPC executive meeting scheduled to be held on January 19 at Anandpur Sahib is likely to terminate the services of Mr Harbeant Singh, suspended secretary of the SGPC. However, Mr Harbeant Singh had reportedly approached the Shiromani Akali Dal President through former SGPC chief Kirpal Singh Badungar in this regard.

Patiala Heritage Fest from Feb 14
Chandigarh, January 17
The Patiala Heritage Festival will be organised at Patiala from February 14 to 22. According to a press statement this was decided in a high-level meeting presided over by Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, here today.

Cold claims one life


Surinder Badal exempted from court appearance
Ropar, January 17
The counsel for former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today moved three applications in the court of Special Judge, Ropar, Mr S.K. Goel. In one of the application exemption from personal appearance was sought for Mrs Surinder Kaur Badal on health grounds.

Anticipatory bail plea of PSEB engineer dismissed
Patiala, January 17
The Sessions Judge, Mr A.N Jindal, today dismissed the anticipatory bail application of an Assistant Executive Engineer of the Punjab State Electricity Board, who was found tampering with official records.

Police remand for Bulbul Mehta
Patiala, January 17
Delhi-based property dealer and one of the prime accused in the case pertaining to illegal human trafficking Bulbul Mehta was remanded in police custody till January 20 by Mr P.S Dhanoa, Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, here today.

Two sentenced to life imprisonment
Moga, January 17

Balwinder Singh and his son Jasbir Singh of Lohara village were today sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering Jaswant Singh of the same village in January, 2002, by the court of Additional Sessions Judge Jagmohan Singh.


Inspector held for firing into air
Jalandhar, January 17
Two brothers, one of them a Punjab police Inspector, were arrested for firing into the air during a marriage party at a local hotel late last night. According to the police, Inspector Manmeet Singh Dhillon, who is posted at Ludhiana along with his brother Vikramjit Singh of Chandigarh reached a local hotel last night to attend a marriage ceremony.

Yet another ‘kabootari’ case
Abohar, January 17
Another kabootari case has been registered here against a woman of Ambala. Mr Balwant Singh, registered medical practitioner of Bazidpur Bhoma village, here had lodged a complaint with the police alleging that Ritu, of Ekta Colony, Ambala had taken Rs 1.20 lakh from him on October 15,2002, and promised to send him abroad but did not keep the promise. Moreover, she refused to refund the amount.

2 hawala agents held
Jalandhar, January 17
The police has arrested two hawala agents on the charge of laundering money for the gangsters, who had been recently arrested in connection with a fake currency racket.

Another undertrial escapes
Amritsar, January 17
Another undertrial escaped from the police custody last evening this time from the court complex. A case was registered against constable Kisan Kumar under Sections 223 and 224 of the IPC at the Civil Lines, police station here today.

Statements of prisoners recorded in graft case
Jalandhar, January 17
The Vigilance Bureau recorded the statements of some prisoners at the local Central Jail here today. These prisoners had been alleging that the jail hospital staff were charging bribe, ranging from Rs 15,000 to Rs 30,000 to refer a prisoner to the local Civil Hospital for better medical treatment.

2 arrested for drug trafficking
Abohar, January 17
Manvinder Singh of Nanak Nagri here and Jaswinder Singh of Rupana village, near Malout, were nabbed by the Sriganganagar police while they were returning to Abohar after collecting smack from a Sadulshehar-based drug trafficker, sources said.


Government to restore 95 pc grant-in-aid to colleges
Punjab Higher Education Minister Harnam Dass Johar interacts with students and members of the Alumni AssociationBondli (Samrala), January 17
Punjab Higher Education Minister Harnam Dass Johar today announced that the state government would restore 95 grant-in-aid to colleges, besides providing better facilities for the promotion of higher education in over 200 colleges in Punjab. To improve the standard of education in colleges, more vocational subjects are being introduced and vacant posts of college lecturers will be filled shortly, he said.

Punjab Higher Education Minister Harnam Dass Johar interacts with students and members of the Alumni Association of Malwa College, Bondli, Samrala, on Saturday. 
— Photo by Pardeep Tewari

Punjabi University wins trophy in youth fest
Patiala, January 17
Punjabi University has won overall first runner-up trophy and overall dance trophy in the North Zone Inter-Varsity Youth Festival. The festival was organised by Association of Indian Universities at Kurukshetra University.

300 students get degrees
Amritsar, January 17
The state government is contemplating changes in education policies to provide international-level education to students. This was stated by Prof Darbari Lal, Minister of State for Education at the annual convocation of the Sarup Rani Government College for Girls here today.

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